Finland welcomes Design Helsinki this summer
The capital’s first dedicated B2B contemporary design event will take place 24-25 August
FINLAND’S CAPITAL HELSINKI is a well-connected and vibrant seaside city with a reputation for producing high quality, conscious design. Renowned for its Nordic architectural innovation, the city also boasts the largest concentration of Art Nouveau buildings in Northern Europe, making it a major centre of architecture. Finnish design and architecture has made its mark on a global scale thanks to the likes of iconic designer Alvar Aalto as well as household-name brands including Artek and Marimekko. Since earning the accolade of World Design Capital in 2012, design has cemented a permanent place as one of Helsinki’s core functions – so it’s no surprise that so many high-profile design showrooms have taken up residency there. Over the past 10 years, Helsinki has become an internationally recognised City of Design, whose experience and expertise are held in high regard. 2022 marks the 10th anniversary since Helsinki was the World Design Capital, and it will suitably celebrate the occasion with a series of events and citywide activities, including welcoming the capital’s first dedicated B2B contemporary design event, Design Helsinki. Taking place 24-25 August, Design Helsinki will highlight the profound influence that Nordic design and its commitment to sustainability has on the architecture and design industries, as well as provide a platform for international design professionals to meet with sought-after brands. Featuring an unmissable programme for design, the two-day event will bring the area to life under the summer sun with festivities to match. Immersive installations will line the streets, a curated exhibition will showcase the latest products, delectable food and drink partners will offer a variety of discounts and deals, a topical talks programme will highlight the industry’s most pressing issues, and much more. The fair will celebrate the area’s local design showrooms, which will welcome architects, designers, dealers, retailers and more through their doors with a jampacked programme of events.
Integral to the festival, the local showrooms that partner with Design Helsinki will provide a stimulating programme of events including talks, workshops, product launches and more. The vast range of showrooms dotted around the city-centre provides visitors an opportunity to explore some of the most inspiring design spaces that Helsinki has to offer with distinguished international brands such as Carl Hansen & Søn, Normann Copenhagen and Kvadrat all taking part, alongside major local names including Marimekko, Skanno and Nomart. Participating showrooms include high-end contract furniture brands, technical specialists and material manufacturers, each of which will contribute to a diverse range of activities, led by industry experts. Visitors will be able to attend a variety of showroom-based events and network in Helsinki’s creative heart. Finnish lifestyle design company Marimekko was founded in 1951 and is famed for its printed fabrics and unique identity. Two of the brand’s Helsinki showrooms will partner with Design Helsinki to showcase its original prints and colours as well as its range of interior products ranging from textiles to tableware. Iconic Danish brand Carl Hansen & Søn has been manufacturing furniture since 1908. With a showroom situated central to the festival map and adjacent to Esplanadi Park, visitors will be able to explore the brand’s latest range of timeless products. Founded in 1946, Skanno hosts highend Italian and French design brands across 700 sq m of showroom space within a neo-Renaissance palace on Erottajankatu 2. Home to more than 40 inspiring brands, visitors can get acquainted with the changing selection of furniture, lamps and materials.
International design pavilion
A key feature of the event will be a 1,650 sq m international design pavilion situated in Kasarmitori square in the Kaartinkaupunki district of Helsinki. Kasarmitori has been carefully selected in relation to its location and architectural significance, and provides the perfect destination for visitors to discover leading Nordic and international contract interiors brands. The curated exhibition will present more than 40 brands and hundreds of products covering furniture, lighting, surfaces, architectural finishes and more. Brands confirmed to take part include Aeris, ARKTIS, Framery, Martela, LINTEX, Vaarnii and more.
Installations and talks programme
In addition to partnering with showrooms and presenting international brands, Design Helsinki will host a series of specially commissioned installations, brand activations and a topical talks programme in partnership with Design Museum Helsinki. As part of the live programme, Design in Conversation promises in-depth dialogue with established and new design talent, industry leaders, journalists and institutes, across a two-day programme of talks. Held within the former building of the Brobergska Samskolan high school in Kaarti, Design Museum will partner with the event to curate a comprehensive programme of free-toattend sessions within their auditorium. A special exhibition by design studio FormaFantasma will also be in residence within the museum.
Other highlights include:
- Helsinki-based architecture office Avarrus Architects will be creating a striking installation next to their practice
- Vaarnii in collaboration with Finnish Gin brand Kyrö will be designing a central bar within the international design pavilion
- Sustainable brand Durat produces solid surfaces from recycled postindustrial plastics and will build a large pyramid of colour at the entrance to Esplanadi Park
- Internationally acclaimed Finnish designer Tapio Anttila will be designing a large-scale glass house installation which will be located on the pedestrianised Keskuskatu, close to Helsinki’s iconic train station
Design Helsinki takes place 24-25 August 2022. For more information visit www.designhelsinki.com