Ville Kokkonen is a Finnish industrial designer born in Helsinki, Finland. He graduated from OCAD in Toronto, Canada, and from the University of Art and Design in Helsinki. Early in his career, he worked as a researcher at the Smart Products Research Group in UIAH, specializing in early product concept development and futures research. Since starting his own practice in 2004, Kokkonen has worked with leading companies in the field of design and technology, focusing on strategic design and new product development. Currently his practice centers on a project portfolio that is probing advanced product and material performance, driven by technological and scientific discovery. Investigations include therapy light instruments to bio-transformative clean air devices. The resulting products are a conclusion of extensive collaborative research and potential projections towards future living conditions. Kokkonen has also lectured internationally in various academic institutions and currently holds the position of Professor of Practice at Aalto University, Helsinki, Finland.
Charles Stankievech is a Canadian artist whose research has explored issues such as the notion of “fieldwork” in the embedded landscape, the military industrial complex, and the history of technology. His diverse body of work has been shown internationally at the Louisiana Museum, Copenhagen; Palais de Tokyo, Paris; Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin; MassMoca, Massachussetts; Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal; Canadian Centre for Architecture; and the Venice Architecture and SITE Santa Fe Biennales. His lectures for Documenta 13 and the 8th Berlin Biennale were as much performance as pedagogy while his writing has been published in academic journals by MIT and Princeton Architectural Press. His idiosyncratic and obsessively researched curatorial projects include Magnetic Norths at the Leonard & Bina Ellen Gallery, Concordia University and CounterIntelligence at the Justina M. Barnicke Gallery, University of Toronto. From 2010-2011 (and again currently from 2014-15) he was hired as a private contractor for the Department of National Defence where he conducted independent research in intelligence operations under the rubric of the CFAP. He was a founding faculty member of the Yukon School of Visual Arts in Dawson City, Canada and is currently an Assistant Professor in the Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape and Design at the University of Toronto. Since 2011, he has been co-director of the art and theory press K. Verlag in Berlin.