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Amos Anderson

The New Amos Anderson Art Museum in Helsinki Goes Underground

Media release.
Published: 27-Apr-2015 09:30 am
Publisher: Amos Anderson

The vibrant contemporary art scene of Helsinki, Finland is getting even more interesting, as Amos Anderson Art Museum is set to build a new venue in the heart of the city. The venue will be located in and below Lasipalatsi, a Helsinki landmark and architectural gem of Finnish Functionalism. Construction work is due to start next autumn.

The exhibition space will be housed entirely underground in a technologically-advanced environment; a protean space that can readily take on various forms and is open to experimentation and new forms of art. “The new museum will serve as a catalyst for new developments in visual culture”, says Museum Director Kai Kartio. “It will offer the ideal venue for experimental and technology-based modern pieces.”

Located in the city centre, the new museum will be in close proximity of audiences and other arts venues.  “People experience art in reflection and response to the changes, imperatives and desires in life. Most museum experiences cut off this vital link to reality”, says Kartio. “We were seeking a location that will facilitate interaction in an organic manner; a place that people would habitually encounter in their daily lives.”

The original Lasipalatsi, built in 1936, was designed by three young architects Viljo Revell, Heimo Riihimäki and Niilo Kokko. “We are breathing new life into an old structure and are committed to maintaining the original integrity of the design and purpose”, says Kartio. The exhibition spaces, designed by JKMM Architects, are to be placed underneath the existing Lasipalatsi square. The spaces will be covered by structural domes, making them free of supporting walls. The main entrance and the museum lobby will be located in the original Lasipalatsi building, incorporating the premises of the renowned Bio Rex cinema. As part of the new museum, the traditional 550-seat cinema will continue to host such celebrated film festivals as Love & Anarchy and the Docpoint festival for documentary films.

Helsinki has the highest per capita concentration of artistsof any city in Europe.  The many different funding options available to Finnish artists is one of the contributing factors to this thriving artistic community that is also becoming more international and multicultural. We hope  Amos  could be a first venue for artists, a place where you  can see and experience things before they are mainstream”,  says Kartio. “On the other hand, this emphasis on new and experimental does not preclude us showing older art, even archeological exhibitions. This freedom of mixing epochs has always been one of our strengths”.

The new Amos Anderson Art Museum will have as close neighbours Contemporay Art Museum Kiasma, which opened in the 90’s, Helsinki Art Museum, opening this year after extensive remodeling, and the elegant 20’s Kunsthalle. “We are planning to work closely together to form a contemporary arts cluster in the centre of Helsinki. Together we can make Helsinki into the arts capital of Northern Europe”.

Construction work on the museum is due to start in the autumn of 2015. “The museum plans to open in 2018, at the latest”, says Kartio. “We are now discussing what art and which artists will be part of our opening exhibitions.”

Amos Anderson (1878–1961) established an endowment with a focus on the arts, and left his entire estate to it upon his death. The museum was established in 1965 and is owned and maintained by the arts association, Föreningen Konstsamfundet. The museum has a strong tradition of supporting emerging artists.


Further information and architectural images:
http://amosanderson.fi/en/  (Amos Anderson Art Museum)
Amos Anderson Art Museum ABC


JKMM Architects

Contact Information:
Museum Director Kai Kartio
Tel. +358 50 562 1145 / kai.kartio@amosanderson.fi

Communications officer Timo Riitamaa

Tel. +358 41 529 2620 / timo.riitamaa@amosanderson.fi

The New Amos Anderson Art Museum in a nutshell
A new exhibition space is being designed and built with the specifications to showcase a broad spectrum art. With high standards of security, climate-controlled conditions and fully adjustable lighting the exhibition space will measure 5 to 9 meters in height. The spaces can flexibly be remodelled to accommodate different kinds of installations. The new facilities at Lasipalatsi will include:

  • Exhibition spaces & galleries 2200 m
  • Movie theatre (550 seats)  1360 m
  • Public workshops 186 m
  • Lobbies & customer spaces 1,337 m
  • Support facilities  3286 m (storage, workroom, logistics, tech-spaces)
  • Entrance lobby & museum shop  574 m
  • Offices, meeting rooms, library 569 m
  • Restaurants, cafes, shops 2330 m  (as with existing Lasipalatsi shopping section)



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