19 MAY
15 SEPT 2019

New Fiskars Village Art & Design Biennale combines art and design and will engage artists, designers, local communities and various audiences. The Biennale will offer a topical, egalitarian platform for encounters between makers and enthusiasts.

EXHIBITIONS

FISKARS VILLAGE ART & DESIGN BIENNALE 2021

More information coming later…

Fiskars Village Art & Design Biennale 2019 exhibitions closed on the September 15. We thank the visitors.

Welcoming three curators, Jasper Morrison, Anniina Koivu and Jenni Nurmenniemi, to share their views and vision. The makers of art and design have been handpicked by the curators, introducing the visitors to nearly 100 artists and designers from around the world. The festival emphasises the principles of diversity and sustainable development. On the basis of these values, the international Biennale will grow, subsist and develop into a meaningful phenomenon, while maintaining an intimate and down-to-earth approach. How can one become better at living together while dealing with differences? In combining art and design, the Biennale offers a unified experience while asking whether the two disciplines can benefit and learn from each other. “Art and design are complementary, and seen beside one another they can enrich each other,” says design curator Jasper Morrison. 

ART

KANSSAELO –
BEINGS WITH

Curator:
Jenni Nurmenniemi

The contemporary art section of the first Fiskars Village Biennale, curated by Jenni Nurmenniemi, delves into the wonder and trouble of togetherness. From symbiotic to other kinds of interdependencies, questions of coexistence are placed in the forefront. The curatorial work has been guided by one of the ever-pertinent challenges of human existence: how can one become better at living together and dealing with differences?

Read more …

The contemporary art section of the first Fiskars Village Biennale, curated by Jenni Nurmenniemi, delves into the wonder and trouble of togetherness. From symbiotic to other kinds of interdependencies, questions of coexistence are placed in the forefront. The curatorial work has been guided by one of the ever-pertinent challenges of human existence: how can one become better at living together and dealing with differences?

In the exhibition Beings with, the focus of this question shifts from a human-centric perspective to considering the ways in which humans, their planetmates, and different technologies are entangled in the process of co-creating this current version of life on earth.¹

Life teems and takes new forms when beings rub against each other. Symbioses can be mutually beneficial or not, but they are happening everywhere. A pioneering biologist, Lynn Margulis, known for her work on symbiogenesis and endosymbiotic theory, made a strong argument for interspecies cooperation being the true driving force of evolution, instead of competition.²

No matter how much our own species preoccupies us, life is a far wider system. Life is an incredibly complex interdependence of matter and energy among millions of species beyond and within our own skin. These Earth aliens are our relatives, our ancestors, and part of us. They cycle our matter and bring us water and food. Without “the other” we do not survive.³

What needs to be stressed, though, is that these interdependencies are not always harmonious affairs. The tricky art of living together is the key to the exhibition, and the artworks chosen or commissioned for the exhibition, from twenty artists, utilize a wide range of artistic methods and languages to explore the ways in which human lives evolved with and continue to be shaped by extra-human forces. They also tackle human attempts to make sense of and master each other and the rest of the planet-dwellers. The artists’ approaches vary wildly from abstraction to immersion to participatory situations.

Fiskars village, its environment, architecture, history, and social structure all contribute to how the exhibition unfurls. The artworks inhabit the Threshing House and Granary buildings as well as outdoor areas by the small river that runs through the village. In addition to the more fixed and stable works of art, there will be participatory sessions happening throughout the biennale’s duration, including tea ceremonies, eco-somatic exercises, and an incense-making workshop.

Whereas some artists turn to speculative approaches and science fiction in their world re-imagining and rebuilding, others adopt scientific methods and recent findings in their work. Both tactics carry the potential to speed up change when things seem to get too stagnant.

Despite the overall forward-thinking mentality, an important undercurrent in the exhibition is the re-reading of history, namely of the troubled sides of coexistence. Some artworks examine how the subjugation of countless beings has been central to the current state of the current political and economic world order – and the present manifestations of the mechanisms of othering. 

While some artists involve particular plants in investigating the ways in which human lives and other materialities affect each other, others have built their whole practice upon working together with the plant world. This might not be an equal relationship, but it is not clear either which party ultimately profits from the other.

The exhibition invites the visitors to slow down, to focus their attention and attune to the signals, materials, and processes that shape the fabric of the everyday but easily go unnoticed amidst its hum and rumble. Instead of offering a mere visual spectacle, Beings with strives to feed diverse senses and imagination. The invited artists have cultivated practices that escape the accustomed logic of representation and instead try to make palpable the invisible threads that connect our lives to the cosmos.

  1. In many ways, the exhibition concept is inspired by the thought of theoretical physicist and feminist theorist Karen Barad. See for, instance, K. 2007. Meeting the Universe Halfway. Quantum Physics and the Entanglement of Matter and Meaning. Durham & London, Duke University Press.
  2. Margulis, L. 1998. Symbiotic Planet. A New Look at Evolution. New York. Basic Books. 33–49.
  3. Margulis, L. 1998. Symbiotic Planet. A New Look at Evolution. New York. Basic Books. 111.

ARTISTS:

DESIGN

SOCIAL SEATING

Curator:
JASPER MORRISON

The design exhibition is curated by designer Jasper Morrison, a master of minimalistic details. Jasper Morrison will introduce to the visitors the eighteen designers of his choice. As one could expect from Morrison, the brief for the designer was clear and simple: design and build a bench. The bench is designed to be shared, thus beautifully reflecting the Fiskars Village Art & Design Biennale’s message of coexistence.

Read more …

This exhibition will be located on an outdoor trail around the village of Fiskars and on a path between two venues for the Fiskars Village Biennale. Based on his belief that creativity deforms and deepens over time, Morrison invites different generations of designers to participate in this exhibition to reflect on the idea. Aiming to provide an interesting opportunity to design something useful and democratic, sadly under-appreciated values these days, Morrison now expects good results from the international group of designers. 

“Biennale has an excellent potential to bring new and interesting results. From the perspective of the designers, designing a bench for a Finnish village is a clear and pure briefing compared with the usual complexities of brands and commercial pressures imposed on the usual design brief.”

Why did you choose a bench, of all objects?

It seemed to fit the location of the Biennale so well and the idea that projects could be installed outside also appealed to me very much as it avoided the usual exhibition space atmosphere, which tends to make group projects of this type look like craft fairs.

Fiskars Village Biennale will combine art and design in to one unified experience.Do you see potential in these two disciplines benefitting from one another?  

I do follow the art scene a bit and there are of course connections between the disciplines but nevertheless they are very different pursuits with very different goals. They are complimentary however and I think seen beside each other can enrich each other.

Where do you look for inspiration?

It’s more a question of absorbing what’s around me, there are the occasional moments of pure inspiration on seeing something that gives a new perspective, but mostly it’s more about soaking up visual material which at a later point might help to form a new work.

You have worked with Finnish design companies in the past, too, and are familiar with the Fiskars Village. Could you describe your relationship with Finland and the Fiskars Village?

As I have been living between Europe and Japan for the last ten years or so, I have occasionally stopped off in Finland on the way. It’s always fascinated me to feel the differences and recognizethat Finland has such an individual and special cultural identity, which sits somewhere between the European way of thinking and the Japanese. Perhaps an ideal model!

The interview was first published in Helsinki Design Weekly 2019

DESIGNERS:

FACTORY

FACTORY PRODUCED
BY ONOMA

Curator:
ANNIINA KOIVU

ACE / Arita 2016 & BIG-GAME, Christien Meindertsma, Ingegerd Råman / Heikki Aska / Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec & Galerie kreo & Flos / Carlo Clopath / Pierre Charpin & Hermès / Com-pa-ny / Benjamin Dillenburger & Michael Hansmeyer, ETH / Marko Escartin, Studio Oksa / Fiskars / Glass Hill & The Woodshop on Fogo Island, Shorefast Foundation / Thélonious Goupil & Iittala / Konstantin Grcic & Magis / Christophe Guberan & Skylar Tibbits, Self-Assembly Lab Mit / Zhenhan Hao / Antrei Hartikainen / Sam Hecht and Kim Colin, Industrial Facility & Mattiazzi / Hella Jongerius & EKWC, Nymphenburg, Royal Tichelaar Makkum, Thomas Eyck / Kaksikko & Nikari / Minja Kolehmainen / Korvaa / Max Lamb / Kwangho Lee & Tajimi Custom Tiles / Helmi Liikanen & Lapuan Kankurit / Enzo Mari & Danese / Laura Mattila & Mikko Merz / Ingo Maurer / Isamu Noguchi & Ozeki Workshop, Vitra / Piitu Nykopp / Jaakko Pakkala & Feathr / Tuulia Penttilä / Poiat & UPM-Kymmene & Aleksandr Puk / Jean Prouvé, Galerie Jousse Entreprise / Nina Pulkkis / Isaac Reina / Giulio Ridolfo & Kvadrat / Richard Sapper & Alessi / Gino Sarfatti, Galerie kreo / Maarten van Severen and Wästberg / Brynjar Sigurdarson & Cirva / Aamu Song & Johan Olin / Kari Virtanen / Studio Wieki Somers / Karin Widnäs 

Read more …

The third Biennale exhibition, the exhibition produced by ONOMA, the Cooperative of Artisans, Designers and Artists in Fiskars, is curated by Anniina Koivu. FACTORY reveals the diversity of contemporary design production in stories. These are the stories of selected objects, each of which speak of the people who created them, the objects’ places of origin and just how many different ways there are of making things.

The starting point is the factory, the place where design is being made. A factory is a place of create: Typically a workshop or large-scale plant, today’s design production can also be found in high-tech laboratories, bio-reactors or even outdoors, at the beach. 

Factories are as diverse as the roles that go into production. Here, craftsman, designer and producer are in constant dialogue. Sometimes their roles intertwine, overlap or even merge. There are tinkerers and makers, explorers and inventors, scientists and story-tellers, rationalists and functionalists.

A factory combines history with progress. A guardian of memory and heritage, it is a place that preserves traditional manufacturing processes. But a factory is never stagnant. It is constantly evolving. An historical manufacturer reinvents itself as research center, and becomes a place of experimentation. A traditional carpentry workshop takes advantage of the most diverse modern tools. New technologies are not a threat to the craftsman’s livelihood. Rather, they are welcome tools for the craftsman who is constantly trying to improve his work. 

Featuring projects created by members of the local Cooperative of Artisans, Designers and Artists (ONOMA) alongside projects by guest designers – both Finnish and international craftsmen and manufacturers – FACTORY invites visitors to step inside the factory. While factories are the places in which the everyday objects that surround us are created, many of us are unfamiliar with what contemporary design manufacturing actually looks like. FACTORY hopes to change that.

Check it out

PARALLEL

The diverse programme of Fiskars Village Art & Design Biennale 2019 will present events organised by local artists, designers and galleries. Invited through an open call process, the parallel programme highlights include children’s events, roundtable discussions, a piano recital, the baking of traditional thin breads and a series of open studios and talks with the local creatives

Check it out

VILLAGE

Founded on the Fiskars river in 1649, the small iron works community is considered the birthplace of Finnish industrialism. The historical buildings in the village, all listed for conservation, and the surrounding biodiverse hardwood forests make the area a unique destination. Currently Fiskars Village is home to some 600 inhabitants, and it is a significant centre for handicrafts in Finland. The village is also a birthplace of the world-famous brand Fiskars, today known for the orange handled scissors, garden tools and various tableware brands as Iittala and Arabia.

HOW TO GET THERE

Direct Biennale-bus from Helsinki on Saturdays

On Saturdays there is a direct Biennale bus from Helsinki. Busses leave from the Kiasma Art Museum (address Mannerheiminaukio 2) at 10 am and will return from Fiskars at 6 pm. Tickets and more info from HERE

By train & bus on Sundays

On Sundays there is a direct bus operated by Fiskars Village from Karjaa train station to Fiskars Village. The bus leaves from Karjaa at 10.40 and from Fiskars at 17.00.

Tickets and more information for the Sunday busses from HERE

Train schedules and tickets on Sundays from your location to Karjaa and back from vr.fi

With your own car

GPS location: Fiskari 60°7’48″N, 23°32’40″E.

If you are using a navigator, the address Peltorivi 1, Fiskars will bring you to the parking lot.

Other possibilities

The closest train station is Karjaa, and the nearest airport Helsinki-Vantaa.

From Helsinki, you can get to Karjaa by bus or train in about an hour, and a taxi or local bus can take you the remaining 15 kilometers to Fiskars – or you could even ride a bicycle.

Train schedules and tickets vr.fi

Bus schedules and tickets matkahuolto.fi

ACCOMMODATION

Fiskars Village is a charming old iron works village in the southern Finland. They have a few good restaurants, cosy cafes and two lovely small boutique hotels. The village is an excellent weekend destination. We recommend an overnight stay.

Accommodation in Fiskars Village

FOOD & DRINK

Fiskars Village is a charming old iron works village in the southern Finland. They have a few good restaurants, cosy cafes and two lovely small boutique hotels. The village is an excellent weekend destination. We recommend that you pause for a break.

We welcome you to visit the Ägräs Distillery Tap Room, local BIENNALE BAR where you can taste Ägräs’ own products in addition to local beers from Fiskars Brewery and ciders from Kuura Cider. The rustic Tap Room encapsulates the essence of Ägräs Distillery. Welcome to have a look at how the distillery works, enjoy wild herb cocktails and world class gin and tonics either inside or sitting at the terrace by Fiskars River. Ägräs Distillery Tap Room is located along the marked path between the Biennale’s main exhibition venues.

More about the Ägräs Distillery Tap Room

Food & Drink in Fiskars Village

We also welcome you to BIENNALE BISTRO Cafe Bar Pesula Fiskars. The Pesula is located in the old laundry building along the marked path between the Biennale’s main exhibition venues.

More about Cafe Bar Pesula Fiskars

NEWS

FVB loading
See more

PRODUCTION

Fiskars Village Art & Design Biennale is a co-production between LUOVI Productions and ONOMA, the Cooperative of Artisans, Designers and Artists in Fiskars.