The social debate of our time often revolves around efficiency, measurable outcomes and fast solutions. At the same time, silence and slowness are emphasized or even commercialized in welfare services, food production, and narratives of alternative lifestyles. The theme of this issue asks what silence and slowness are ultimately aimed at and what could they challenge. Depending on the perspective, slowness can either be worth pursuing or it can clearly refer to "retardation" or a lack (e.g. bureaucracy). Silence, in turn, can be a value to be sought for: we often long for the quiet of nature or wish for the traffic noise to muffle down. Silence can be an issue that makes communication difficult, or even aggressive/passive resistance, for example when an initiative receives only silence in return. What might connect silence and slowness, and what might separate them? Are there certain specific aspects of knowing and being that are associated with slowness and silence? 

Questions that might be addressed include:

What kinds of dimensions can slowness and silence unfold? 

In which contexts they can be manifested in artistic work and artistic research?

... in processes of interaction?
... in spatial practices?

What might silence challenge?

What might slowness challenge?

How may silence or slowness challenge the public space?

How to recognize slow, quiet signals?

How are epistemological conceptions related to slowness and silence: what is slow slowness, or silent silence?

What kind of sound may silence or slowness generate?

Is slowness always silent, or silence slow?

This issue invites artist researchers from different disciplines to explore the slowness and silence in the digitalized world, in different kinds of processes, individually or collectively. 

The issue is edited by Maiju Loukola, Jaana Erkkilä-Hill and Eija Timonen. We ask you to create your proposals for research expositions in the Research Catalogue (RC) at Note! The creation of an exposition requires registration and a complete RC user account (see ‘register'). Please submit your proposals (complete expositions) via RC ('submit to publication', 'submit unlimited publication to', and 'ruukku') no later than 1st May 2020. (NEW DEADLINE 31st of MAY 2020) In need for additional information, contact

Draft submissions can be discussed with the editors before 15th of April 2020. In this case the exposition should be shared with the editors using the RC link share function. Use the ‘share' menu, keep the exposition private but select the last option (‘When enabled…'), confirm the selection and send the link via e-mail to the address above. If you need assistance, please contact

Detailed instructions for submitting and draft submissions can be found from

RUUKKU is a multidisciplinary, multilingual, peer-reviewed rich media journal on artistic research launched in 2013. RUUKKU is published and supported by the University of the Arts Helsinki, Aalto School of Arts, Design and Architecture and the Faculty of Art and Design at the University of Lapland, with a particular focus on multi-lingual publication. The primary languages of publication are Finnish, Swedish and English.