Friday, June 01, 2007

Fiskars Village

While in Finland, I visited Fiskars Village.


It's very picturesque. It's also the ancestral home of Fiskars Ironworks. You know, the scissors.

Fiskars scissors

When Fiskars needed more room and moved out, the artisan squatters arrived.

the forging machine.JPG
This guy is working in the forge and that machine is a 'pounding stamper' (that's a davername) it must be to blacksmiths what the electric rolling mills are to jewellers.

The village is full of artist's studios, craft shops and galleries. It's an hour and a half from Helsinki and it's very beautiful and seemingly very well run and everything is of an extremely high standard. I was really impressed by the 2 group shows that were on in the two big galleries: 'Points of View' at the Copper Smithy and 'Transparent' at the Granary.

exhibition space.JPG
The Copper Smithy

entrance to the granary.JPG
The Granary

A work that really caught my eye was a collaboration between Hilary Pfeifer and Christian Bannister. It was exhibited in 'Points of View'. Hilary Pfeifer came to Fiskars as an artist-in-residence and brought with her a selection of music on her iPod, chosen for her by Christian Bannister, to listen to while she worked. This was the result...

Hilary Pfeifer and Christian Bannister collaboration.JPG

It's a section of a long wall work and unfortunately the image doesn't reproduce the colours well. When she returned home she gave the piece to Christian because she "wanted to hear what it sounded like". Christian then created a sound work as a response to Hilary's wall work and she then made another series of objects as a response to his second recording.

Hilary Pfeifer and Christian Bannister collaboration.JPG.JPG

Both recordings could be heard on headphones near the artworks. I love collaborations, particularly when artists respond to each others work.

I also saw this fantastic product in one of the shops...

great product.JPG
porcelain milk jugs! (sorry, I couldn't find the name of the designer)

And here are some close ups of the old mill which is constructed from 'slag bricks' I guess they're a bi-product of the steel making process but they're quite beautiful.

slag bricks at Fiskars mill.JPG

slag bricks at Fiskars mill.JPG

And so, the end of my stay is nigh. I'm outta here next Friday, boo hoo. It's so hard to say goodbye.


Beck said...

you know fiskars is like my dream village...
i'm so glad you got to go, it has always seemed like some magical idea that surely couldn't exist in the real world.
trust those crafty fins, always coming up with the unexpected, quietly getting good stuff done.

shannon said...

These look a lot like pots made by British potter Joanna Howells
I love her work.

annadee said...

Beck, I would have probably said that when you go to Fiskars it's like you've died and gone to heaven but unfortunately I had a splitting headache the whole time I was in Finland and so I was struggling a bit. It really is quite incredible though. The surroundings are absolutely beautiful and the quality of the craft is excellent, I'm definitely going to apply for an artist in residence.

And thanks Shannon, her work is beautiful, I don't think it was her product but I like her interpretation even better.

Sade Kahra said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sade Kahra said...

Hello, Hilary Pfeifer noticed your blog and I found it too. Nice! The Fiskars artist in residence has an own blog too now, welcome to check it out:

And the milk jars are made by Finnish ceramic Jatta Lavi:

Good luck with you applications, deadline 30.9.2007 for residencies next year! More info:

Fiskars-habitant, photography artist, exhibition secretary (the Granary) and residence coordinator

Sade Kahra