Helsinki kukoistaa ja kasvaa, mutta millaista on arkkitehdin työ Suomessa vs. maailmalla? Kreabmedian haastattelussa arkkitehti Natalie Stratakis Visiomo-arkkitehtitoimistosta.
1. What is it like to live and work in Finland vs. overseas?
It’s difficult to compare how it feels like to live in different countries, since I myself have been changing and finding myself in different life stages when I lived in Sweden, Greece and now in Finland. My background and connection with the countries is also totally different. And this certainly affects how it feels to work and live in a country.
The one difference I have noticed is, that in Finland close cooperation, in the meaning of coming up with ideas together, is not so common. It feels that in cooperation, everybody manages and creates something very much “ready”, which then is put together. Different from example Sweden, where I remember “balling ideas” often with my co-workers. In Swedish, it’s actually a word: “att bålla ideer”, at least in spoken language! I guess, the lack of it here, has to do with Finnish Sisu!
2. In what ways can great architecture affect peoples lives?
Good or bad architecture IS affecting peoples lives in every way, if we want it or not. Because architecture is all around us.
The aesthetics and the materials can make us feel comfortable, fascinated, inspired – especially in our times, when visuals define us and the quality of ourselves and our lives.
The way we solve the functionality of an architecture space affects how people move in it, in what sequence they might experience different feelings.
By designing the scale and the distance of elements in a building or a town, we regulate the denseness of it. We can monitor how spaces enhance privacy or interaction. With architectural planning, we can cause or prevent segregation!
3. What do you consider as great architecture?
Great architecture is just that, Buildings and spaces and items that affect people in a great way.
4. Helsinki is blooming and growing, what are in your opinion the most influential and exciting buildings?
Influential is a strong word…
Alvar Aalto is influential, the stroke of cultural buildings alongside Töölönlahti. I remember when Steven Hall’s Kiasma was built and I still think it’s an architectural pearl in Helsinki centre.
A newer blooming stroke in Helsinki Centre is the sea line between Katajanokka and Hernesaari, filling up with different Café’s and recreation along with it, at last! It’s such a treat to have the possibility to swim in the Helsinki City Harbour at Allas Sea Pool, at Mattolaituri you can watch the Finns wash their mats, and in Löyly you can have a sauna in a cosmopolitan modern piece of architecture … and it’s that twist, that fusion of different experiences – aesthetical, social, connection to the Finnish ways etc. – that makes them so good.
5. What would you like to see more in the future in the architectural field here in Finland?
Sure, I would like to see more modern and “daring” architecture in Finland, it feels that there is a bit too little of these structures with this “wow” effect. But then, this Scandinavian countries’ way is more calm, modest or careful – which also sets the base for the famous Scandinavian style.
But more creative fusion architecture, so much that it stands out and becomes visible and noticeable as a style or tendency in Finland, that would be cool!