Even in the clutches of approaching winter, the art scene continues to be in rude health. And as we know, international superstars are also welcome in this city. The Picasso show at the late-19th-century Ateneum art gallery seems to keep up a steady influx of visitors. Up the hill in Steven Holl’s late-20th-century Kiasma the Ars Fennica competition is showcasing Finnish angst and the Swiss Pipilotti Rist is offering video-art as elixir.
Her works are life-affirming if sometimes disturbing giant videos projected onto walls and ceilings, a hit with gallery visitors of all ages. The whole is stamped with shades of pink, allowing a rare chance to look out through the gallery windows towards the west to see the Sibelius Academy (built as Konservatorio in 1931, designed by Eino Forsman) with the Parliament to its right (also 1931, Johan Sigfrid Siren), all in PINK.
The sun also shone briefly on the building site of the Music Building, to the north of Kiasma. This photo shows the charred remains of the old railway warehouses which so many Helsinki-residents fought to keep. The story is told in many places, with many inflections. Journalist Kimmo Oksanen published his version having followed events unfold from his work-place, the glass-and-steel building to the east of Kiasma, Sanomatalo (featured previously on this blog).
But back to the aesthetic, leaving the exhibition spaces and heading for the exit (south) through Holl’s chalky atrium treat is a treat in itself.