The Kilden theater and concert hall in Kristiansand, Norway, designed by ALA architects. ALA Architects are Juho Grönholm (1975), Antti Nousjoki (1974), Janne Teräsvirta (1975), Samuli Woolston (1975).
Photo © ALA Architects
Selina Anttinen (1977) and Vesa Oiva (1973) are Anttinen Oiva Architects. They designed the Kaisa-house for the University Library in Helsinki. Photo © Anttinen Oiva Architects
Avanto Architects are Anu Puustinen (1974) and Ville Hara (1974). They planned the new cemetery chapel of St. Lawrence in Vantaa. Photo © Avanto Architects
"Round" is the video work of Elena Näsänen shown at the Frankfurter Kunstverein. Photo © Elena Näsänen
The installation "Times Zones" by the Finnish artist duo Grönlund & Nisunen at the Frankfurter Kunstverein.
Photo © Norbert Miguletz
The work "Unstable Matter" by Grönlund & Nisunen is shown in the stairwell of the Frankfurter Kunstverein.
Photo © Norbert Miguletz
Here come the Finns!
by Adeline Seidel
Sep 2, 2014

Each year, the various views offered on the Guest of Honor country at the Frankfurt Book Fair enliven the city’s cultural program. And this year, it’s Finland’s turn to take the limelight. To make certain you don’t have an excuse for having missed out on something, here’s an overview of all the key events and exhibitions. It looks like there’s something in it for everyone interested in design and architecture – and even those who want a little movement in life.

Young Finnish architecture

Let’s start with Finnish architecture. Deutsches Architekturmuseum Frankfurt (DAM) has joined forces with the Museum of Finnish Architecture (MFA) and the Architecture Information Centre Finland, to organize an exhibition entitled the “Suomi Seven – Young Architects from Finland”. And let’s be honest: Why do we still only think of Alvar Aalto and Eero Saarinen when the subject turns to “Finnish architects”? Making it all the more exciting to find out more about who at this very moment is shaping the future of architecture in Finland. The exhibition will present seven young Finnish architects born in the 1970s and 1980s who have already realized an astonishing range of different projects. And anyone wishing not only to view Finnish architecture but also to hear something about it, too, will no doubt enjoy the symposium being held to coincide with the show; there the Finnish magnificent seven will themselves take to the lectern.

Design and art

Frankfurter Kunstverein is also serving up food for the mind – via the ear. On September 4, Steinernes Haus is the venue for two lectures that will take a close look at contemporary Finnish design. Kristine Hebenstreit will speak about “Finnish design as a symbol of national identity” and Pekka Timonen, the former General Director of “World Design Capital Helsinki 2012”, will explain what “Design-Oriented Thinking for an Easier Life” actually means. And if you’ve got as far as Frankfurter Kunstverein, then why not also cast a glance at the group show “Matters of Time. Artists from Finland”. The exhibition features eight Finnish artists and artist duos and, or so the announcement says, will offer any manner of insights into the full diversity of Finnish art today.

Dance wildly, but stay cool

Come next month there’ll be dancing from Finland, too: “Run Wild Stay Cool”, a festival of contemporary Finnish dance, will kick off on October 4 at Mousonturm. Four different ensembles will present new productions. Not to forget the somewhat cooler Finnish version of the tango (in a minor rather than major key). Which is why on October 6, Frankfurt’s Literaturhaus will host a tango ball – accompanied by literature of course. Meaning all that’s missing is a sauna and Finlandia vodka. Which can both be enjoyed together – in private of course.

Deutsches Architekturmuseum Frankfurt:
“Suomi Seven – Young Architects from Finland”
September 6, 2014 thru January 18, 2015
September 5, 2014, 2-7 p.m.
Followed by the opening

Frankfurter Kunstverein:
“Matters of Time. Artists from Finland”
thru October 12, 2014
Lectures on Finnish design:
September 4, 2014, 8 p.m.

“Run Wild Stay Cool”
October 4-12, 2014

Literaturhaus Frankfurt:
“Satumaa – Cool Tango Evening Finnish Style”
October 6, 2014, 7.30 p.m.