Press release 22 November 2012
HIRAMEKI HIMMELI: CHRISTMAS GREETINGS FROM FINLAND TO JAPAN
HIRAMEKI HIMMELI is a Christmas greeting from Finnish designers to Tokyo. 28 himmelis from 25 designers are on show in Tokyo-Midtown commercial centre from 15 November until 25 December 2012.
Himmeli is traditional Finnish Christmas ornament made from straw. The basic element is a regular octahedron, a geometrical shape where the edges are made from pieces of straw of equal length. Bigger ornaments are constructed by combining the basic shapes. They are then traditionally decorated with rye ears, ribbons and paper strips. The best himmelis are made from rye with the longest and hardiest straw. It was customary to hang a himmeli above the table where it brought good luck and plentiful harvests for the coming year.
HIRAMEKI HIMMELI is a series of new interpretations of the traditional himmeli. Materials vary from the familiar straw to plywood, metal, glass and acrylic. Many designers have regarded himmelis more as a sculptural mobile than an ornament. There is also a himmeli made in origami from paper by the Finnish-Japanese designer Naoto Niidome.
The participants of HIRAMEKI HIMMELI are Aalto+Aalto, Tapio Anttila, Design Kuu, From, Kirsi Gullichsen, Elina Helenius, Eero Hintsanen/Chao&Eero Jewel, Marita Huurinainen, Renata Jakowleff, Jukka Korpihete, Chao-Hsien Kuo/Chao&Eero Jewel, Veera Kulju, Majamoo, Muotohiomo, Muovo, Musta Design, Naoto Niidome, Mai Ohta, Inni Pärnänen & Marianne Huotari, Saana & Olli, Ilkka Suppanen, Matti Syrjälä/Kaamosgroup, Satoko Taguma, Annele Valkama/Creadesign and Esa Vesmanen.
Two large himmelis complement the smaller ones in Tokyo-Midtown. The Japanese artist Tomoko Obuko has created a himmeli consisting of several parts. Another piece is by designer Mikko Paakkanen, known for his Medusa lamp. This himmeli, made of LED lights, is executed by Saas Instruments from Finland.
HIRAMEKI HIMMELI is a joint project of Design Forum Finland, the Finnish Institute in Japan and Midtown Management. It has been inspired by an exhibition of Finnish glass art in the Suntory Museum of Art in Midtown Gallery from 21 November 2012 until 20 January 2013.
HIRAMEKI Design x Finland is a series of export initiatives of Finnish design in Japan. The first HIRAMEKI project took place in 2010 in Tokyo, with 64 Finnish designers, design offices and design companies participating in it. Over 40 000 visitors saw the related exhibition in Living Design Center Ozone. In Christmas 2011 Hirameki was a joint project with the department store Isetan. In 2013 Hirameki will again be highly visible in Japan.
HIRAMEKI HIMMELI 15 November–25 December 2012 Tokyo Midtown Galleria, 1.–3. floors
Glass Design from Finland 21 November 2012–20 January 2013, Suntory Museum of Art, Tokyo Midtown Galleria 3. fl.
9-7-4 Akasaka, Minato-ku, Tokyo 107-8643, Japan