The third Fiskars Village Art & Design Biennale brings a wide range of surprise guests to the village

The Fiskars Village Art & Design Biennale will take over the Fiskars Village again from 16 June to 1 September. The interdisciplinary main exhibitions offer the visitor new perspectives as well as reminders of the importance of community. In addition, the Biennale celebrates 375 years of the company’s Main Partner, Fiskars.

The guests at the Old Granary stay all summer

The Surprise Guest Main Exhibition on the first floor of the Old Granary is inspired by the wonderful Finnish summer villa culture. The 2022 biennale introduced visitors to tiny houses designed by architects. Surprise Guest continues telling the stories of summer living. This time, we enter an atmospheric, imaginary summer villa, where a series of experiential spaces are built, from the dining room to the living room and from the summer kitchen to the veranda. This design exhibition presents the best in Finnish design, and in  different rooms we meet greats such as Fiskars, Artek, Nikari and Woodnotes, Johanna Gullichsen and Villa ja Peite, Durat, Lapuan Kankurit, and Parolan Rottinki. 

The moment of surprise comes when surprise guests arrive at the villa. Each room will have an artwork selected by curator Sini Rinne-Kanto, whose work adds layers and depth to the spatial experience. The artists hail from all over the world: we can expect names such as Laëtitia Badaut Haussmann, Kim Farkas and Laura Gozlan.

On the second floor of the granary, a group of students will be spending their summer. A Summer School project called Village Works, guided by architect Taneli Mansikkamäki, will teach the participants as well as the exhibition visitors about life at the ironworks. Village Works will leverage Fiskars’ rich cultural and craft heritage, offering participants the chance to learn techniques from local experts. 

Village Works not only embraces the village’s social landscape but also explores living concepts beyond urban settings by examining what is essential and superfluous in our urban domesticity. Work is produced through continuous material experimentation, design, and the crafting of artifacts, tools and habitable structures. Biennale visitors will also get a deep look into the creative process when students work in the exhibition space in July. 

In addition, a Biennale Shop is planned for the ground floor of the granary, with a wide selection of carefully chosen high-quality products.

The Creative Community of the Village is international

Another of the Biennale’s Main Exhibitions celebrates the 30th anniversary of the artist cooperative Onoma. An exhibition called Fragile is curated by Marja Sakari and will take place at the Copper Smithy. 

Onoma’s internationally recognized summer exhibition tradition is long. However, on this anniversary year, the curator’s desire was to focus on locality, and most of the artists chosen are from Fiskars. The theme of the 2024 exhibition brings thoughts to world politics and nature as well as to the fragility of life in general. 

The village community formed by Fiskars artists and craftsmen can be seen as a fragile structure loosely shaped around creativity, but at the same time it has become suitably resilient and powerful. The area history, nature, traditional crafts, peaceful environments and inspiring work spaces are still factors that attract different artists. People come and go, but art and creativity will always be present.

The Fragile Exhibition features works by a total of 69 artists. An additional five artists, selected from the Onoma’s international residency programme Fiskars AiR will also join the exhibition.

Applications for the extensive Parallel Programme will open on 19 May. Everyone is welcome to organize their own event as part of the biennale. Events include open studio tours, jazz concerts and poetry recitals. You can find the application form here.

The biennial, organized for the third time at Fiskars Village, has already established its place in the cultural calendar of the summer. The summer 2024 biennial has a special reason to celebrate, as the main partner Fiskars Group, founded as an ironworks on the banks of the Fiskars River, celebrates its 375th year. Helsinki Design Weekly is the Official Media Partner of Fiskars Village Art & Design Biennale. Both projects are founded by Luovi Productions.

Fiskars Village Art & Design Biennale 16 June – 1 September 2024. You can find more information here.