Statement addressing the situation in Photography

Dear ARTS community,

The allegations of Timothy Persons’ abuse of power, harassment of students, and lack of transparency regarding the relationship between Aalto ARTS (successor to TaiK) and the Helsinki School were brought to our attention by articles published by Long Play (08.02.2022) and Helsingin Sanomat (09.02.2022).

As the student association representing the whole of ARTS, TOKYO wants the school administration to conduct the inquiry into these allegations in a transparent fashion. Students and staff need to be kept in the loop. In addition to an independent university-wide investigation, we expect the ARTS administration and leadership to take concrete actions to prevent future misconduct and work towards a safer studying environment for all students.

As representatives of arts, design, and architecture students we take these allegations regarding the treatment of photography students seriously. Due to the lack of their own student association since the BA major in photography has been cut, TOKYO takes responsibility for photography students advocacy and other representation matters. In this critical moment, TOKYO wants to remind you that we are here to listen and take actions accordingly. You can reach out to our chair Totti Korpua (, vice-chair Mante Zygelyte ( and advocate Alex Vahera (


Further assistance can also be received from AYY’s harassment contact persons Lauri Jurvanen and Fon Krairiksh, who can be reached out via


We hope to see our school unite by bringing in an open and transparent dialogue to find the best practices for students, faculty and administration.

On behalf of TOKYO board,

Totti Korpua, chairperson
Mante Zygelyte, vice-chairperson
Alex Vahera, advocate