Leila Kourkia

Artist-in-Residence June 2014

(photo by Riikka Sundqvist)
(photo by Riikka Sundqvist)

Leila Kourkia is a Finnish dancer and a choreographer.


As a dancer she has been working with many acknowledged Finnish choreographers (Jenni Kivelä, Ulla Koivisto, Marjo Kuusela, Eeva Muilu, Liisa Pentti, Elina Pirinen and others).


Her latest choreograhical work is a solo piece titled ”Pen”. The piece is a study of relationship between humans and inanimate objects by using a ballpoint pen as a counterpart for the living body. The composition forms around the person and the pen and it becomes an experiment in imitating the pen and its strokes.


In dance art Kourkia is interested in multidisciplinary work and often collaborates with visual, media and sound artists (Kaisu Koivisto, Martta Tuomaala, Merja Puustinen and Andy Best). At the moment she is working with a researcher-scenographer Elina Lifländer on a project titled ”SKIN OF THE SPACE”, where the body’s sounds become a part of a visual, spatial installation.


Studying the natural world through movement is a fundamental issue and a theme that Kourkia always finds interesting to work with. In 2009 she choreographed a solo piece “Puu” (“A Tree”, Theatre Academy of Helsinki) followed by “Vesi” (“Water”, Z-free production Zodiak Center of New Dance) in 2010. In 2011 she worked as a choreographer and a dancer in a lighting designer Nanni Vapaavuori’s and a researcher-scenographer Elina Lifländer’s work “Between Two Skies” (Gallery Laterna Maciga, Helsinki). All these works are a part of her ongoing nature-project, which will continue in the winter 2014 in a dance performance for an exhibition by a sculptor Kaisu Koivisto. The main issue in the upcoming work will be an experience of mountains.