Often informed by its harsh climate and stunning landscapes, Nordic design, specifically architecture, has a unique relationship with nature. Photographers of Nordic architecture have benefitted from studying this close connection in their photos that experiment with capturing light, innovative materials, and landscape to create a compelling composition. Below is a selection of images of both public and private architecture by prominent photographers such as Pasi Aalto, Bert Leandersson, Mika Huisman and Åke E: Lindman.
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The city of Helsinki has announced the launch of a self-driving bus line that will integrate into the city’s regular transportation service. The service, known as the Helsinki RoboBusLine, is the second phase of a three-year experimentation with autonomous buses as part of the Sohjoa project, an EU-financed venture by the six largest cities of Finland, Finnish universities, and transportation authorities to prepare for new public transit services and autonomous vehicles.
When placed in a historic landscape, contemporary architecture requires a layered approach. It must often strike a respectful, vernacular tone, whilst embracing the innovative, functional hallmarks of a modern building. This balance has particular relevance at Suomenlinna Sea Fortress, located off the coast of Helsinki, Finland. Throughout its 300-year history, it was once occupied by the armies of Sweden, Russia and Finland – a rich history attracting UNESCO World Heritage status, and almost one million annual visitors. The site is more than a museum, however, but a living district of Helsinki with 800 inhabitants and 500 jobs.
7 Architectural Solutions for Asylum Seekers Shown by the Finnish Pavilion at the 2016 Venice Biennale
The 2016 Venice Biennale may have officially closed in November, but many of its constituent parts continue to have a life beyond the confines of Venice. From Border to Home, the exhibit hosted by the Finnish Pavilion, showcased the results of an international architecture competition between October and November of 2015 that called for residential solutions for asylum seekers that offer both short-term shelter for refugees and long-term impact on the surrounding community. Three winners and four honorable mentions were featured in the exhibition, accompanied by a blog that offered sustained dialogue on the topic from architects around the world. On March 21st, Finland's contribution to the Biennale will finally be concluded with a review of the Biennale's themes and a seminar on the pavilion, hosted in Helsinki. Read on to find out more about the winners and four mentions from the competition that were featured in Finland's From Border to Home pavilion.
As one of the key figures of midcentury Modernism and perhaps Finland's most celebrated architect, Alvar Aalto (3 February 1898 – 11 May 1976) was known for his humanistic approach to Modernism. For his characteristically Finnish take on architecture, Aalto has become a key reference point for architecture in the Nordic countries, and his commitment to creating a total work of art left many examples of his design genius not only in buildings but also in their interior features, including furniture, lamps, and glassware design.
Snøhetta has been selected as the winners of an invited competition for the design of a new hotel to be located on the Hakaniemi waterfront in Helsinki, Finland. Aimed at becoming a “new beacon of Helsinki,” Hilbert’s Hotel will provide new public space for the city while increasing accommodation for visitors.
Last year saw the Alvar Aalto Foundation experience a record-breaking number of visitors at each of its four sites – a total of 42,755 as opposed to the 36,744 people that toured the sites in 2015.
Lahdelma & Mahlamäki, with associate architect Arkkitehdit m3, has won a competition for the design of a new Travel Services Center and residential block to be located in the city of Oulu, Finland. Located between the low-lying neighborhood of Puu-Raksila and the high-rising city center, the complex will connect districts through large, arching openings puncturing through a dynamic, horizontal profile, while providing new housing for the city.
The City of Tampere, Finland has announced the proposal by Schauman & Nordgren Architects and Mandaworks as the winner of an open international competition for Hiedanranta Bay's new master plan. The design, entitled "Hiedanranta Innovation Bay," responds to the rapid growth of Tampere's central region. Over the next 20 years, the Innovation Bay will see the transformation of the former industrial district into an innovation hub for sustainable economic development, creating 10,000 new jobs, and housing over 25,000 new residents.
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