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Until 31 December, the exhibition FIX: Care and Repair at the Design Museum and the Museum of Finnish Architecture in Helsinki addresses the need for maintenance and restoration.

FIX: Care and Repair
Restoration of the Diamond Chair. ‘Diamond Chair’ by Harry Bertoia for Knoll, 1950, restored by Henna Koskinen, 2023. Museum of Finnish Architecture and Design Museum Helsinki Collection | Photo: Anni Koponen.
FIX: Care and Repair | Photo: Paavo Lehtonen

Objects and buildings are subject to wear and tear over their lifetime. Along with other impacts of time, dirt and constant use. Maintaining them and repairing them when they sustain damage requires a great deal of effort and skill. So for which objects do we spend time and money on conservation?

The importance of reducing the disposal of damaged products has long been recognised. To conserve resources and reduce waste, the EU has just adopted new laws on the ‘right to repair’. Until 31 December, the Design Museum and the Museum of Finnish Architecture in Helsinki will be hosting the exhibition “FIX: Care and Repair”, dedicated to the theme of repair, maintenance and cleaning. The exhibition brings together architecture, design and contemporary art. It focuses on the repair of objects and buildings, environmental care and the aesthetics of wear and tear. At the same time, museums serve as places of care, where collection management and conservation ensure that objects are well cared for.

 In the spring of 2023, the two museums launched an open call for proposals for the care and conservation of architecture and design. By the deadline, more than 130 applications from the fields of art, craft, design and architecture had been received, from which a jury selected four contemporary artworks for realisation. These commissioned works also served as a catalyst for the selection of further content for the exhibition. Participants in the exhibition include Alvar Aalto, Eero Aarnio and Harry Bertoia, as well as Bertolt Brecht, Alexander Calder and Dyson, iRobot, Iskas and Ilmari Tapiovaara, and many other contemporary Finnish artists, designers and architects. The exhibition architecture by designer Lauri Johansson, with its plasterboard panels, also alludes to ongoing renovation.

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