Finland Pavillion for Shanghai World Expo 2010

2009-03-06_Day_Exterior_ViewThe Finnish pavilion at Shanghai World Expo 2010 is called “Kirnu” (“Giant’s Kettle”). Designed by a team from Helsinki-based architect’s office JKMM, Kirnu won first prize among 104 entries in the design competition, which was announced in May 2008.

The results were made public in October 2008 in Helsinki. The planning started immediately, and construction began in April 2009, with the pavilion due to be completed in December 2009. The head designer of the pavilion is architect Teemu Kurkela. Below is a description of the Kirnu concept as seen by the architect.

More images, video and architect’s description after the break.

The Finnish pavilion at Shanghai World Expo 2010 portrays our country in microcosm, presenting both and its society to the world. The pavilion can be seen as a miniature city built by Finns. Its inner space tells stories of and the Finns. The pavilion is an example of how Finns are building better cities according to the principles of sustainable development. Like Finnish society, the pavilion combines creativity, high technology, and culture – a unity that makes for good human life.

The sculptural architecture of the pavilion is aimed at creating visions of such themes as freedom, creativity, and innovation. The pavilion emerges like an island from the surface of the water. A bridge leads visitors over the water and into the pavilion. At the heart of the pavilion is the miniature city’s center and forum for events, the “Giant’s Kettle,” where ideas can meet and mix.

More description in the ’s official website.

Cite: Jordana, Sebastian. "Finland Pavillion for Shanghai World Expo 2010" 13 Nov 2009. ArchDaily. Accessed 17 Sep 2014. <>


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      I totally agree. this forcing of irregularity in form isn’t always working. nice one, Finland, wait till it rains

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    I totally agree with bill. I wonder somebody likes this design..where we go..expo will look like restroom, sorry for negative reaction about this design but nothing else came to my mind.

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    I think this is the best pavillion i have seen in this shanghai-disneyland-circus-expo, yet. This is a mature concept, its clean, sensitive and harmonious, it perfectly represents finnish design and culture, it has a interesting scale-facade (check the photos on the official site) and good interiors for a exposition. Its not trying to be showy..its not jumping to your face..but still its interesting and fun. Its a well planned EXPObuilding.

    ..and about the toilet bowl look..yeah, it looks like it from a bird view, but are you experiencing a building from a bird view?

    ..and Im not just saying this cos Im finnish.

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    Toilet bowl comparison aside, it’s the best project I’ve seen so far for the Shangai Expo. AND there was a decent competition behind the project. I wouldn’t mind being finnish right now…

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    Beyond the very shallow architectural debate, (what it’s iconography is) what do people actually DO here? It looks like an empty space to me, with some people thrown in. There’s an attempt at explaining some exhibition content about Finland cities, but this just sounds like post rationalisation and the experiential element hasn’t been designed at all. BLAND.

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