Friday, February 19, 2016

Expo '92, Suomi paviljonki - The Finnish Pavilion - El Pabellón de Finlandia

The old Expo'92 site in Seville is somewhat a magical place. It's easy to dismiss its charm as everything is run down and sorta abandoned. It's amazing to think that this year we are coming up to its 25th anniversary.

Not that I ever visited it back then, but once, while digging out some information on the Finnish Pavilion, I found this awesome news clip from the Finnish news which I actually think I remember seeing!

It says it's from summer 1992 and in the opening speech the dude, still a politician, mentions that Finland just turned in the application for the EU membership! Wow, these days, the whole idea of Finland not being part of the EU sounds crazy. It's kind of cool to think that today I work for the EU in Seville, and at the same building that was the Expo'92 headquarter.

Anyway, back to the Finnish Pavilion which is called "Helvetinkolu", a"Gorge of Hell". It's situated on Calle Marie Curie, 1 and can be viewed through the gates. It's still in use, namely by the Foundation for Research and Promotion of Architecture. The name of the building, I suppose, is a reference to a gorge in Finland with the same name. The geological features of this area were created millions of years ago (pic below right), says the web.

The building is pretty cool, its combo of rusting steel and natural wood has weathered well its time. On wikipedia it says that the Finnish Pavilion is divided into two buildings, called "keel" (wooden: a reference to the nature and tradition) and "machine" (steel, glass, black: represent industrialisation and modernity), leaving between them a narrow open space of only two meters wide, kind of a gorge. 

The cool thing about the wooden structure is that it is supposedly made of Finnish pine and its artisan execution follows the principles of shipbuilding.

I also found out that one of the architects is still in practice and works with pretty interesting looking wooden structures. There is a link under projects to the Finnish Pavilion. The designers and architects were young architect students; Juha Jääskeläinen, Juha Kaakko, Petri Rouhiainen, Matti Sanaksenaho and Jari Tirkkonen, they are also interviewed at the news clip.

Last, worth watching is this promotional documentary from the Expo site, it's crazy to see how it actually looked like back then....

1 comment:

Jari said...

Nice blog! I'd appreciate correcting the typo in my name, though...