Wild at Heart – A Collection of Modern Finnish Design and Art – curated by designer Tero Kuitunen, offers a look into the exciting world of contemporary Finnish design. Originality, boldness and use of vibrant colour characterize the design language. The exhibition is a tribute to the lesser known side of Finnish design and culture, with a wild sense of humour and passion to be found and enjoyed. The eleven designers move boldly at the intersection of art and design, with wild hearts and open minds.
“I especially want to highlight how multifaceted Finnish design is. I think we are currently living in a design Renaissance, where people move more freely between different creative territories”, says curator Tero Kuitunen.
The exhibition consists of three stages.
The Raw Beauty stage focuses on material and strong visual language. The young master carpenter Antrei Hartikainen’s pieces are both functional products and pure works of art as well as a modern ode to craftsmanship. Photographer and visual artist Sofia Okkonen explores how femininity is performed in her own distinct visual language while Tero Kuitunen works with the concept of touch and how different materials, especially ceramics and clay, invite touching. Klaus Haapaniemi’s magical world is filled to its brim with folklore references and his painstakingly detailed illustrations grace both glossy china and rich textiles.
The Social Impact stage offers a closer look at how design influences society. Milla Vaahtera breathes new life into glass blowing and Tuuli-Tytti Koivula’s clothing collection deals with plastic waste and ways to reuse and repurpose the material. The company Mifuko was born out of its founder’s wish to employ and empower women in rural Kenya. The work is flexible and safe, and the regular income financially enables the women’s independence.
Photo: Janne Riikonen
Playfulness and humour are woven into every aspect of the exhibition, but it is especially pronounced on the stage of Wild Humour. Eero Aarnio is one of the most important designers in Finland and over the years his works have been characterised by their originality and conceptual bravery. The rich and colourful design language of Teemu Salonen’s design-sculpture hybrids contains multitudes: it is both gaudy, glamorous and cultivated, while COMPANY’s Aamu Song and Johan Olin celebrate craftsmen and women all over the world in their designs, combining a strong appreciation for tradition, timelessness and the joy of making.
Mari Martikainen one of the speaker at Design talk - Design & Social Impact panel with Milla Vaahtera and Susanna Pettersson. Photo: Janne Riikonen
Wild at Heart is an international exhibition project initiated by the Finnish Institute in Germany, in collaboration with the Finnish Institutes in Hungary, Sweden and Japan. It premiered at Vienna Design Week in 2019 and has since been shown in Budapest. In 2020 the exhibition will tour Stockholm, Japan and the Habitare interior, design and furniture fair in Helsinki. The exhibition is sponsored by Bolon and Lapuan Kankurit.
Exhibition open February 5th- April 4th in Stockholm