Anti-Guggenheim Helsinki design competition attracts 200 alternative visions

by Jason Holland | 14 Apr 2015

A design contest launched to rival the controversial Guggenheim project in Helsinki, Finland, has received more than 200 entries from 37 countries.

Set up by a group led by architect Michael Sorkin, The Next Helsinki competition is a protest against the City of Helsinki’s decision to allow a $153m (€146m, £105m) Guggenheim museum to be built in the South Harbor area.

Instead of allocating space to a “foreign-owned museum chain”, the contest seeks to find ways the culturally significant site can be “transformed for the maximum benefit” of residents and visitors.

The Guggenheim Foundation has said its museum would present internationally significant exhibitions of artworks from the 20th and 21st centuries, specialising in Nordic art and architecture. Its competition to design the museum received 1,715 entries, and a shortlist of six has been drawn up. The winner is set to be announced in June 2015.

Sorkin will chair a final meeting of The Next Helsinki jury on 19 April, with an open seminar at the Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Art also taking place. The results of the competition will be announced the next day – although given the theoretical nature of the contest, no single winner will be announced. Instead, Sorkin said the goal was to open up a discussion process.

Other members of The Next Helsinki jury are gallerist Ilona Anhava, architect Walter Hood, artist Juha Huuskonen, artist Heta Kuchka, professor Juhani Pallasmaa, urban ecologist Miguel Robles-Durán, professor Neil Spiller, professor Andrew Ross, curator Joanna Warsza, professor Mabel Wilson, and professor Sharon Zukin.

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Finalists announced for Helsinki Guggenheim competition

A design contest launched to rival the controversial Guggenheim project in Helsinki, Finland, has received more than 200 entries from 37 countries. Set up by a group led by architect Michael Sorkin, The Next Helsinki competition is a protest against the City of Helsinki’s decision to allow a $153m (€146m, £105m) Guggenheim museum to be built in the South Harbor area. Instead of allocating space to a “foreign-owned museum chain”,
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The team behind the contest are seeking ways to transform the South Harbor area for the maximum benefit of residents and visitors
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