The Hjelt Lecture Series

The main initiative of the lecture series is to offer an international approach to the Finnish art scene by presenting speakers with various views on the topic of art. The lecture series are open to the public, from art enthusiasts, students and professors, to collectors, gallerists and other professionals within the field.

The End (and Ends) of Photo Criticism

Photographer: Harris Fogel


Time: 9 and 10 April 2019
Venues: Turun Taidehalli and Yrkeshögskolan Arcada

Titled “The End (and Ends) of Photo Criticism”, the lecture addressed Coleman’s professional experiences over the past half-century, changes in the field of photography during that period, and the shifting situation of photography criticism across those decades.

Celebrating his 50th year as a critic, historian and curator

Currently celebrating his 50th year as a critic, historian, and curator of photography and photo-based art, Allan Douglass Coleman has published 8 books and more than 2 500 essays on photography and related subjects. Formerly a columnist for the Village Voice, the New York Times, and the New York Observer, Coleman has contributed to ARTnews, Art On Paper, Technology Review, Juliet Art Magazine (Italy), European Photography (Germany), La Fotografia (Spain), and Art Today (China). His work has been translated into 21 languages and published in 31 countries.

Coleman received the Culture Prize of the German Photographic Society in 2002, the first critic of photography ever so honored. In 2010 he received the J Dudley Johnston Award from the Royal Photographic Society (U.K.) for “sustained excellence in writing about photography.” And in 2014 he received the Society for Photographic Education’s Insight Award for lifetime contribution to the field.

His widely-read blog “Photocritic International” appears at Since 2005, exhibitions that he has curated have opened at museums, galleries, and festivals in Canada, China, Finland, Hong Kong, Italy, Rumania, Slovakia, Spain, Taiwan, and the U.S.

The talks were organised by Smidiga övergångar i Svenskfinland Development Project at Yrkesinstitutet Prakticum, in co-operation with Arcada University of Applied Sciences, The Museum of Finnish Photography, Photographic Centre Peri, Arts Academy – Turku University of Applied Sciences and Allan and Bo Hjelt Art Foundation.

Alternate History and Poetry Performance
Coleman’s presentation “Alternate History: Robert Capa on D-Day”, was followed by a poetry performance at Club F5.6 Lavaklubi at The Finnish National Theatre in Helsinki on April 9, 2019.


Humanitarian Architecture – Disasters, Development and Design Responsibility

Time: 21 and 22 November 2018
Venues: Museum of Finnish Architecture, Helsinki and Migration Institute of Finland, Turku

Esther Charlesworth is a Professor in the School of Architecture and Design at RMIT University and Director of the Humanitarian Architecture Research Lab [HARB].

‘Humanitarian Architecture ’ is a collective belief that through a consultative process of spatial problem solving, the design profession can contribute in a significant way to the complex challenge of rebuilding a city and its community, following the event of a natural disaster.

Esther Charlesworth’s lecture explored her journey into humanitarian architecture over the last two decades and explored how she has merged theory and practice during her career in the establishment of Australia’s first design not for profit agency – Architects Without Frontiers.

Professor Charlesworth is the founding Director of Architects without Frontiers (AWF). Since 2002, AWF has undertaken over 42 health, education and social infrastructure projects in 12 countries for vulnerable communities, and has been described by ABC radio broadcaster Phillip Adams as ‘destined to develop into one of the greater forces of good on this battered planet ’.

At RMIT, Charlesworth is the Academic Director of Master of Disaster, Design and Development degree [MoDDD]. Since 1990 she has worked in the public and private sectors of architecture and urban design in Melbourne, Sydney, New York, Boston and has published seven books on the theme of social justice and architecture, including: ‘Divided Cities ‘ (2009), ‘Humanitarian Architecture ’ (2014) and ‘Sustainable Housing Reconstruction ’ (2015).

The lectures were organised by the Department of Architecture at Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture and the Museum of Finnish Architecture as part of the Interplay of Cultures program, and in collaboration with the Migration Institute of Finland and the Allan and Bo Hjelt Art Foundation.

Can architecture build a better world?

Interplay of Cultures – the Museum of Finnish Architecture’s leading autumn exhibition – celebrates the 25th anniversary of education in global sustainability and humanitarian development at Aalto University, while also raising concern regarding the current state of world affairs.

The exhibition 
Interplay of Cultures is on until February 24, 2019 at the Museum of Finnish Architecture.

Säynätsalo Talks | Rethinking Säynätsalo Town Hall

Time: 28 May 2018 at 15.00
Venue: Säynätsalo Town Hall, Council Chamber, Säynätsalo

In the fall of 2017, eleven Master of Architecture students from the Harvard University Graduate School of Design travelled to Finland with professor Toshiko Mori, to conduct research on the Säynätsalo Town Hall and the work of Alvar Aalto.

Harvard MArch

Photographer: Toshiko Mori

They spent the semester contemplating the future role of a town hall that had lost its original programmatic and symbolic functions due to the redistricting of regional townships.

In these talks professor Toshiko Mori discussed the working process and key findings of the architecture studio. Florence Lam and Benjamin Hayes, Master’s Students in Architecture, presented their fresh views on the future of the Säynätsalo Town Hall.

The Rethinking Säynätsalo Town Hall talks included a poster exhibition at the Säynätsalo Town Hall.

Detailed program
Facebook: Säynätsalo Talks

The Talks are organised by Hjelt Art Foundation in collaboration with Alvar Aalto Foundation, ArtekCity of Jyväskylä and Tavolo Bianco Oy.

Artek Talks Rethinking Säynätsalo Town Hall by Harvard University Graduate School of Design

Time: May 29, 2018 
Artek Helsinki Store, Helsinki

Professor Toshiko Mori discussed the working process and key findings of the architecture studio. Florence Lam and Benjamin Hayes, Master’s Students in Architecture, presented their fresh views on the future of the Säynätsalo Town Hall.

Opening of the Rethinking Säynätsalo Town Hall exhibition. The exhibition will be on display at the Artek Helsinki Store until mid-June.