Viaggio verso a Casa

MILAN – MARCO VELARDI

As I was growing up during my teenage years in Italy, I’d always imagine that having my own home would be such a natural and straightforward thing. Like something you would graduate to after going to university – purely a matter of passing a final test and there you would be, sitting in your living room reading a book from your carefully organized and dust-free bookshelf, cooking tasty recipes out of an endlessly filled fridge and having a wonderfully loving cat who wouldn’t scratch any of your record covers. Well, probably this wasn’t my exact picture of life as a grown-up, but I was definitely ignoring a lot of the things that I would later have to come to realize.

After all, finding a place that you can call home is not that easy a task, and it doesn’t come without a good dose of mistakes and possibly a few headaches. It took me three years, a painful breakup and lots of self-questioning, but in the end there I was, sitting in an empty flat wondering how to fill it without spoiling the freshly painted walls. I realized that I didn’t really own much besides way too many boxes cramped with books and magazines, a mobile phone and an old laptop – still no bookshelf or fridge in sight. I wasn’t ready for the idea that the apartment would begin to get older. That, after time, the walls would show the signs of their inhabitants, that plants could get overwatered and die from one day to another. I always questioned whether it was me being careless, or if everything that was happening was just the slow daily process of transforming a house into your own personal space. And even if thought I had it all sorted in my mind and I was making room for tiny errors here and there, I realized I wasn’t even close to the bigger picture until last year, when all of a sudden it was two of us calling these four walls a home. Life as I knew it completely changed, toothbrushes became two, mugs multiplied, and breakfast in the morning didn’t taste the same anymore: it was actually much better. I slowly rearranged life around our new formation, and it got me thinking of all the new unexplored aspects of life I didn’t even know existed. A home is both fun and exhausting, it involves a lot of sharing and giving, but more than that, it is an endless possibility of journeys, which is what makes it special for me.

The writer is the editor-in-chief of the magazine Apartamento and a creative consultant at his own design agency SM Associati in Milan.

 

Peter Fankhauser: Poor Animal (2011) Still from colour video TRT 3:00 minutes, looped Image courtesy of Phillips de Pury & Company

Peter Fankhauser: Poor Animal (2011) Still from colour video TRT 3:00 minutes, looped Image courtesy of Phillips de Pury & Company

 

Stack Them!

BY MARK KIESSLING – Unlike the bookshelf, a pile of books is rather demanding, aggressive and always in flux.

It keeps loitering on your desk, stands in your way, gets dusty and conceals titles you may have been looking for some time or may have long forgotten. A good pile of books will keep you busy. It can be a spark of inspiration and will always remind you of something you were about to do or have done.

Going through a good pile of books is perfectly pleasurable and never a waste of time.

Since I am in the business of future readings, piles of books influence my life more than ever. I have never been a very orderly person, but since running do you read me?! it really exceeds acceptable levels. They are everywhere. Piles of samples. Piles of review copies. Piles of printed matter that promote the ones to come. Piles of readings that we decided not to include in our range, which have found their way to us nevertheless. Piles of titles that I have put aside for myself. Piles of treasures that I gathered when researching other bookstores. There are beautiful piles of books with an almost architectural appeal, and then there are ugly ones. Some you long for to go through, and some you want to get around.

Mark Kiessling is founder and co-owner of the magazine and bookstore »do you read me?! in Berlin, Germany.

 

 

An Edible Urbanism

BY DAN HILL

Last summer, Helsinki witnessed two culinary insurgency movements in quick succession. One was fixed in space and had the outward appearance of an elegant van parked outside Lasipalatsi. The other was fixed in time, manifesting itself as a distributed festival of pop-up restaurants, sudden flashes of inspiration appearing and disappearing on a single day. Each would hint that a new city was emerging.

The first was the Camionette, a mobile créperie that – by not being a sanctioned “grilli” or “kioski” (i.e. local street food vendor) – suggested an entirely new kind of street food, and street life, in the city.

The second incursion was Restaurant Day. This started with a small group who were frustrated at the paperwork required to start a café in Helsinki. So they set themselves the lowest bar possible; they simply declared that a certain day would be Restaurant Day and anybody could open any kind of restaurant anywhere on that day. And that’s what happened.

From frog’s legs to flat whites, the city’s food palate expanded radically. But more importantly it reimagined the use of public space, demonstrating to Helsinki’s citizens what their streets could do. Although the resulting ’restaurants’ were right at the edge of the City’s legal boundaries, if not well over, there was little the City could do about it.

For one thing, there was barely any organization there. Restaurant Day is essentially a set of instructions, and you can hardly arrest a set of instructions. It’s a demonstration of the power of an emergent urbanism, enabled through social media and platform thinking, driven by an appetite for participation at the hyper-local level.

The only problem with Restaurant Day is The Day After Restaurant Day. It’s as yesterday never happened, and here we see the limits of the intervention, of the tactic as opposed to the strategy; it is too transient and variable to change a system. The original motivation – addressing the inabilty to easily set up a café – has not been addressed.

But can we see these examples of emergent urbanism as ’lead users’, indicating what a diversifying Helsinki needs to be? Street food is interesting precisely because it is a carrier for cultural change, through its highly visible quotidian accessibility, and the wider systems it sits within, ultimately touching most aspects of modern life. The shift from cold, impassive “grilli”, designed for heavy drinking and poor eating in darkness, to the colour, verve and diversity of Restaurant Day is both profound and explicable.

If we were to write a manifesto for a more resilient Helsinki, would street food give us a platform for prototyping systemic change within the city? Can every day be Restaurant Day? And more strategically, can we use street food systems to sketch a more sustainable Helsinki, with a more active street life, strong service culture and start-up scene, and a diverse set of cultures at play?

As unlikely as it may seem, rethinking the humble hot dog might just unlock a new kind of urban design, centred on citizens, culture and replicable systemic change rather than concrete one-offs.

Dan Hill is Strategic Design Lead for Sitra.

 

Helsinki Restaurant Day, Photography by Heidi Uutela.

Helsinki Restaurant Day, Photography by Heidi Uutela.

Design Moneyfest 2012

BY KAJ KALIN – Nobody needs design.

Globally thinking, design is a rare need.

It’s hard to know anything about it.

In a designer hotel, someone died of designer drugs.

Design: A class trip and status picnic.

The latest cell phone model upgrades a consumption worker.

Design: The rank of nobility for products.

Design: Products whose existence is motivated by looking and talking.

Design:Well-planned desires realized in a disciplined manner.

Good manners are not enough; we need laws.

Imagination is not enough; we need business.

Realism should not be confused with rationality.

The most important things in life don’t require nuclear power plants.

Everyone needs well-designed and safe products.

Especially if you can’t walk or brush your teeth.

Or if you lose a leg, an arm or an eye. Things happen.

A deadly and fascinating combination: Technology.

Technology is not based on progress but on the power of the few,

novelties and greed.

Technology feeds boredom, rage and world-weariness.

Technology invents social styles.

Handwriting is disappearing.

We leave behind radiation waste.

In large companies, designers don’t struggle with their consciences.

Thousands of in-house designers are acting against their better judgment.

On summer vacation, everyone carves a bark boat with a birch rind sail.

Made in Nuremberg: They were only following orders and doing their duty.

Question: When does the age of design begin?

Answer: When a child learns table manners.

The goal of life is not happiness but other people.

No matter how seductive products may be.

In spite of it all, we are mortal.

Whatever appeals to emotions touches.

Half of memory is smell and skin.

Only touching can make the feeling of existence reality.

Touch is a fundamental sense; it anchors us to the world.

The strength of the squeeze of a newborn baby’s fingers is startling.

The first dialogue with the world takes place through squeezing and sucking.

Awareness of touch is the first mental capacity of humans.

There is no authenticity in the world of products and art.

Just authentic pieces of copies.

The painting guarded in the museum was a disappointment.

The colours were not the same as in the poster hanging on the wall at home.

Publicly authentic mostly means… how to phrase it… generally fasist.

When art is real, the person who creates or experiences it has a moment in heaven,

when no one else is around.

What makes something real can hurt,

and it may not necessarily be pleasant or beautiful but is absolutely good.

Esthetics is a question of belief. The only supernatural experience.

The only possible miracle. Successful resuscitation on the side of a highway.

Big and complex questions can be answered by simple means.

As long as the right preconditions exist.

It is a question of the human need for safety.

This means a state that strengthens concentration and allows

a degree of peace and quiet.

Made it, home.

Characters with Spaces:

Event is the space between two people, humanity.

Come closer!

Go through!

Kaj Kalin, Cultural journalist and design curator. Honorary member, Finnish Association of Designers Ornamo. Nordic Design Prize 1998. Kalevi Jäntti Foundation Literature Prize 1994.

 

By TIINA ALVESALO

TWO DIFFERENT HOMES FAR AWAY FROM EACH OF OTHER.BOTH WITH THE PURPOSE OF GIVING COMFORT. BOTH MEANT FOR JUST SPENDING MOMENT THERE AND THEN RETURNING TO SOMETHING PERMANENT.

TEMPORARY HOUSING IN JAPAN’S EARTHQUAKE AREA

Last spring the tsunami that hit Japan swept over the harbour town of Onagawa, destroying the whole town centre in a matter of five minutes. The people there lost everything.

Architect Shigeru Ban, renowned for using recycled materials and cardboard paper tubes, wanted to help the victims of the earthquake. Ban is known for his earlier humanitarian work in, for example, Haiti, Japan’s Kobe and Turkey.

Now Ban has built temporary housing for nearly 200 families. A total of 188 apartments were built into nine buildings. A library and an art hall were designed for collective use.

All of the building materials were recycled or recyclable. The temporary apartments were built out of containers piled on top of each other and held up by steel poles. The Finnish company UPM ProFi took part in the reconstruction work by donating deck composite made of recycled material to Ban’s project. It was used for building the interior corridors and 30-meter-long terraces outside the houses.

The apartments have one to three rooms, electricity, gas and plumbing. Two colours have been used in the terrace decking to show which way the doors open and where it is safe for children to play.

Shigeru Ban, where did you get the idea for using recycled cardboard paper tubes for temporary houses?

“I used paper tubes for the first time as an alternative material for wood, which is generally expensive, in 1986 when designing the scenography of an Alvar Aalto exhibition.”

What is the most important thing that must be taken into account when designing and using paper tubes?

“How to combine the shape of the tube and the structural system in design.”

What kind of feedback have the people living in the temporary houses given?

“Warm as wood.”

 

BY TIINA ALVESALO

The Chapel of Silence built in the middle of the busiest section of Helsinki offers comfort to those who need it the most, regardless of creed and wallet size. The chapel is open from morning to evening, and visitors can meet employers of both congregations and social services there. Questions are answered about anything from bus schedules and spiritual matters to how to seek help for the problems of homelessness.

The chapel is simple in design. It is built of wood and has a sculptural form. It is a place where people and an important theme for World Design Capital 2012 meet: permanent improvement of the cityscape through service design. The chapel is one of those design year monuments that will remain a part of the Helsinki city landscape.

Mikko Summanen, why did you want to build a chapel in the middle of the busiest city center?

”The aim was to create an alternative to the restless buzz and the commerciality of the city.”

What did you need to take into account?

”We wanted to design a humane building.”

How do you think citizens experience the building?

”The chapel brings order to a busy square and reorganizes the space so that it becomes more functional.”

 

Photo: Arkkitehtitoimisto K 25, All the rights reserved 2012

Photo: Arkkitehtitoimisto K 25, All the rights reserved 2012

Founder & Editor-In-Chief Tiina Alvesalo, Published by Artek

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Founder, Editor in Chief, Publisher and Creative Director of PÀP Magazine 2000-2006

PÀP MAGAZINE was distributed in Academic Bookstore Helsinki, 10 Corso Como Milan, Collette Paris, Armani Store Milan and selective galleries and bookstores in 24 countries around the world: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Great Britain, Greece, Hong Kong, Italy, Japan, Korea, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Taiwan, Thailand, USA and South Korea.

 

# Issue N.1 Spring – Summer 2002 Design is Everywhere

# Issue N.2 Autumn -Winter 2002 Fashion Gets Political

# Issue N.3 The Fashion Issue February – March 2003 Woman as a Wolf

# Issue N.4 The Design Issue, April – May 2003 Design your Life

# Issue N.5 The Art Issue June – July 2003 Art of Intimacy

# Issue N.6 The Hotel Issue August – September 2003 Move to a Hotel

# Issue N.7 The Fashion Issue, October – November 20003 Teens do it Better

# Issue N.8 The Food Issue, December – January 2003 Eat with Love

# Issue N.9-10 The Fashion Issue February – March 2004 The New Creative Class

# Issue N.11-12 The Art and Hotel Issue August – September 2004

# Issue N.13 The Fashion Issue October – November 2004, Agelessness

# Issue N.14 The Fashion Issue – February – April 2005, Who Am I Without You

# Issue N.15 The Design Issue / May – July 2005 Sound Of Style

# Issue N.16 September – October 2005 Sense of Design

# Issue N.17 November – January 2006 The Black Issue

# Issue N.18 February – March 2006 We Hate Women

# Issue N.19 Fashion Issue 2006 Fuck Art

 

PàpMagazine is a new international “Fashion Bible”. It is a tool for professionals to understand new aspects of world of fashion, and current social issues.

Pàp is an abbreviation of the word prêt-à-porter, a new concept launched in the late 1960’s when this sartorial fashion began to be industrialized. This development facilitated mass production of traditional haute couture, and fashion began to be made for wider circles of consumers. When designers created dynamic product brands, marketing, advertising and distribution channel concepts, the prêt-à-porter industry grew in to a global phenomenon.

By the end of the 1990’s, the prêt-à-porter industry had begun to produce interior design objects, furniture collections and service landscapes bearing the names of designers. Fashion designers conquered realms which had traditionally been considered area dedicated to product designers and architects.

Today pàp phenomena can be seen in interior design, the automobile, in the content of independent magazines, contemporary art, high-tech objects, advertising, concept stores, brand-categories as well as in consumer products and services.

Pàp is also an abbreviation for the word ‘papisme’, popeism. Pàp symbolizes prêt-à-porter’s attempt to be “the cultural almighty”. PàpMagazine has a mission to defend humanity, freedom and the good life.