• Exhibition

Close the loops

  • Industrial design and products
  • Interior
  • Fashion and textile design
  • Sustainability
Sep 3, Thu 08:00-21:00
Sep 4, Fri 08:00-20:00
Sep 7, Mon 08:00-21:00
Sep 8, Tue 08:00-21:00
Sep 9, Wed 08:00-21:00
Sep 10, Thu 08:00-21:00
Sep 11, Fri 08:00-20:00
Otaniementie 14
Event type
Free Admission
Accessibility for all

Making things and manufacturing processes produces pollution and environmental degradation which drains natural resources. 

Single-use and short life-cycle products and packaging generate a lot of waste. During 1950 to 2015, the annual production of plastic has increased nearly 200-fold. The fashion industry alone produces over 92 million tonnes of waste and consumes 79 trillion litres of water per year. 

To close the loops, we need to design products that can be fully recycled and with materials that will be reused.

Learn from the seven projects that battles in the game material experiments:

1. What’s cooking? Bio-based material experiments by CHEMARTS 

From a bio-adhesive to reed panels and cellulose foam, a unique work created in collaboration with designers and biomaterial researchers shows what natural materials can do. Some of the recipes can be tested at home, while others are better suited for school and university laboratories. 

2.–25.9.2020, Väre, FK Lobby gallery, Otaniementie 14


2. Shimmering Wood  

The secret of the wonderfully shiny surface is nature’s own miracle ingredient, nanocellulose. Nanocellulose can be produced not only from wood but also from bacteria and agricultural waste. The colour has no colour pigments at all but is created from light-reflecting nanostructures, just like nature’s brightest colours in peacock feathers or butterfly wings., Väre, V1 Gallery, Otaniementie 14 


3. CANCELED: Hidaka Ohmu seaweed pavilion 

Due to coronavirus restrictions, we have decided to cancel the seaweed pavilion on the Otaniemi campus. Instead you can experience Julia Lohmann’s Kombu Ahtola algae piece at Annantalo (Annankatu 30, Helsinki) on 20 August 2020–31 January 2021.


4. Biotech Talks  NewSilk 2020

10:09:2014:00 – 16:30 ONLINE EVENT

Designing materials on a molecular level – what does it mean for researchers, designers, and the globe? 

New biotechnology companies are established, designers and artists are fascinated by biodesign and bioart, and science laboratories open for the public are emerging. But what is synthetic biology? What are the aims, methods, and possible implications? 

Keynote speaker: Daniel Grushkin 

The event will be held in English

Register here: https://aalto.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_PJzwnkkjSHCWDhzyfmEKPg 

Webinar Size: maximum 500 attendees, open for everyone in the general public interested in biotechnology.

Partners:​ Helsinki University, Academy of Finland and VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland 


5. FUNGI the future possibilities of mycelium  

Mycelium is seen as a potential future material in various applications in the field of design. This is due to its attractive properties: mycelium is easy to grow and can feed itself with any waste material. It is also fire resistant, detoxifying, grows into any shape, and is incredibly strong., Väre, V2 Gallery, Otaniementie 14


6. Capturing microplastics and pharmaceuticals from waste water

Microplastics and pharmaceutical residues are notorious villains in our water systems. Scientists at VTT and Aalto have developed wood-based materials to tackle these nasty problems: a filter that can capture the smallest microplastic particles and a yarn that can capture harmful hormonal residues, both using nanocellulose., Väre, Bridge 2nd floor, Otaniementie 14


7. Naturally Dramatic – Textile design for sustainable costumes  

Stage and film productions still make costumes with toxic materials like leather glues or solvent-based paints. The exhibition features textiles, materials and manufacturing methods that contribute to more sustainable practices and circular economy models in costume making.

Visit to Naturally Dramatic exhibition by appointment only. Book in-person tour

Personal online tours available. Book online-tour

2.9.–12.10.2020, School of Chemical Engineering, lobby galleryKemistinkatu 1, Espoo.


BOOK A VISIT to the Cooler Planet exhibitions at Otaniemi:

Dear visitors according to the current coronavirus guidelines, only the Aalto students and personnel can visit the Otaniemi campus exhibitions without pre-booking

> enroll to see three exhibitions at once, at Väre: Close the loops, Consume consciously and Farewell to fossil fuels

Address: Väre buildingOtaniementie 14, Espoo.


Back to the Designs For a Cooler Planet main page.

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