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Hannu Aaltonen
Hannu Aaltonen, Arboretum 2003, photo: Hannu Aaltonen
Lauri Astala
Lauri Astala,2006, photo: Päivi Kiuru
Kirsi Kivirinta
Kirsi Kivirinta, 2005, photo: Johnny Korkman
Anu Tuominen
Anu Tuominen,2006,photo: Anu Tuominen
Party at Kaj Franck's street & Arabianranta Walk
22.5. 18:00-20:00
Cooperation in the Arts at Arabianranta

In 2000, the City of Helsinki obliged the developers of Arabianranta to spend 1–2% of the construction costs on art from the very start of construction. The background to this is the City’s profile as a patron of the arts, but it is also a question of respecting the important historical strata of the Vanhakaupunki, Toukola and Arabia areas, something that is clearly evident even in the detailed plans for the areas in question. In practice, the obligation means that competitive bidding proposals for land owned by the City must also include proposals for the art to be placed at the sites. Each work of art is implemented immediately at the stage when the house is built. This obligation added an entirely new function to the building process, and as a consequence, the management group for the area established a post of Art Coordinator at the University of Art and Design. The person appointed to the post was to provide guidance and help in implementing the works of art.

When building work in the area approached the halfway point in summer 2006, there were 52 art projects in the process of implementation and a further 21–23 existed as proposals or sketches. The works included sculptures, ceramics, graphic concrete, photographs, paintings, mosaics and light installations and community art projects. Their sizes varied from that of a postcard to pieces the height of a six-storey building. Most of the works of art have been placed in the stairwells of the residential blocks.

Planning of the southern part of the area, Toukoranta, has now been completed and construction of the housing in the shoreline blocks can start. Here, art will mainly be placed outdoors: in yards, on facades and next to footpaths or embedded in the surfacing of the footpaths themselves. Lighting will also be used to full advantage. The plan is to develop art projects in Toukoranta that particularly take into account the pupils of nearby schools, including children and young people with disabilities.