FAQs: Helsinki

Q. Who do I contact for more information?

A. Travis Price, Founder of Spirit of Place-Spirit of Design, Inc. 
Finland: +358.40.366.1178
US: +202.965.7000

Kathleen Lane, Director of Spirit of Place Institute
Finland: +358.40.859.1435
US: +202.965.7000

Brittany Watson, blogger for Spirit of Place

Q. How can I participate? 

A. Come to the opening on August 26th starting at 18:00. More information on the Facebook event site. And for heavens sake join the Facebook group, follow the blog, and tell all your friends! 

Q. What is Finnish about the Kalevalakehto?

A. In short,  stalwart character and living mystery.    In my recent readings and observations, there is a real  world of wildly varied characters and always impeding nature that seems so prevalent  in the landscape, the people I meet, and much of the romantic architecture in Finland. This also resonates in the new Finnish architecture since  Aalto.  There is a passionate hammering of  meticulous modernist detailing and precision that echoes the pounding of Ilmarinen.   There is a calm power in the simple roundness of the  Kalevalkehto which is simultaneously  interrupted with a mad passion of breaking out.   In the Kalevalakehto  we are trying to build a new modernist piece that captures the epic’s  character as an emotional expressionism.    The Kalevalakehto’s very shape intentionally blurs the Shaman shape shifting of Väinämöinen with its symmetry and non symmetry washing up on shore like a boat or sled  in a whirlwind.  As well  the breaking open of the egg of creation is literally illustrated by the breaking apart of the bow and stern as well as the roof .  The open passageways  themselves are set in opposing ends to emphasize the shifting movements of tides not unlike Väinämöinen’s  shifting character. Indeed the stainless steel compounding curve of the roof floats above and protects the wood walls as a great homage to the brilliance of Ilmarinen’s  metallic genius, the embryonic birthing of ideas as the egg.  The steel roof is testimony to Ilmarinen’s  ability to make earth and fire into iron,   and eventually the greatest irons,  curving stainless steel.  This is perfected by the quiet yet critical use of glass as both a transparent and protecting element.  The Kalevalakehto is industrially  shaped Karelian wood is married with Ilmarinen’s steel and glass which all tell the tale of birth, Vainamoinen, and Sampo