• Discussion

Design Diplomacy 2018 – Estonia

  • Architecture
Event type
Registered Only
Accessibility for all

The Estonian Embassy Residence takes part in the Design Diplomacy concept for the first time this year.

The Embassy of Estonia is located in the Kaivopuisto Park in Helsinki at the junction of Itäinen Puistotie and Kalliolinnantie. The embassy building was built by the Estonian state on a lot bought by Oskar Kallas in 1919. Before the current building, the lot housed a villa built by registrar P. W. A. Behsen in the 1870s. The Estonian delegation operated in one apartment of the wooden house until at the initiative of Hans Rebane in 1931 there was a decision to build a new embassy on the same site. The design contest was won by Estonian architect Konstantin Bölau, and the building was completed in 1933. The two-storey house represents the functionalist style. It was the first embassy building built by the Estonian state.

The Design Diplomacy pair at the Estonian embassy residence will be architects Vilen Künnapu and Tuomo Siitonen.

Professor Vilen Künnapu is one of the most important Estonian architects of the last three decades, and he was among the first postmodernist theoreticians and architects in the 1970s. During his studies, Künnapu was part of a cross-sectional Soup 69 group whose work combined spirituality, pop art and technological futurism. Since the 1970s, Künnapu has developed postmodern architectural theories and, for example, Soviet-socialist collective spaces in the postmodern style. His recent work has been described as energy-centre architecture, in which postmodern aesthetics are combined with religious mysticism. His recent work includes Tigutorn (“the snail tower”) in Tartu and the science center Ahhaa to be built next to it.

The event is full.

The event is part of the Helsinki Design Week Design Diplomacy discussion series, which open the doors to Helsinki-based ambassadors’ residences. See the participating embassies and their schedules here.


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