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finland’s first landmark dedicated solely to dance opens inside 1940s cable factory in helsinki

dance house helsinki by JKMM architects and ILO architects

 

JKMM architects and ILO architects have collaborated on ‘dance house helsinki’, finlands first landmark dedicated to the performance and experience of dance. the recently-opened venue is located within a former 1940’s cable factory, which now serves as the largest cultural center in finland. taking its inspiration from dance, the project’s architecture plays with illusions of lightness and heaviness. meanwhile, the building’s industrial aesthetic also reads like a machine, with the state-of-the-art black box theaters serving as its ‘internal engine’.

 

‘it has been a privilege for us architects to be involved in creating a new home for dance,’ notes teemu kurkela, the project’s lead architect and co-founder of JKMM. ‘the project is unique and there are only a handful of similar buildings in the world. the dance house is like a huge modern ‘dance machine’ that will be turned on when dance begins, when the dancers and the public take over the building.’JKMM dance house helsinki ILOimage © hannu rytky

header video by tapio snellman (music: olavi louhivuori, dancers: oskari turpeinen, sophia wekesa)

 

 

finland’s first landmark venue dedicated solely to dance

 

dance house helsinki / tanssin talo is designed as a vast machine-like venue, built to celebrate the art of dance and other performing arts. the project is located inside the city’s former cable factory, which manufactured marine cables in the 1940’s. in the early 1990’s, the city of helsinki acquired the building, which now serves as finland’s largest cultural center, housing everything from museums to art schools and studios, including dance house helsinki.

 

designed by JKMM architects (more here) and ILO architects (more here), the new venue has the biggest stage in the nordics built specifically for dance. the project adds a contemporary layer to the existing factory complex, bringing the old and new in dialogue with each other. its architecture takes its cues from dancing, featuring two suspended steel elevations that bring in a weightless quality. one elevation is designed as reflective and immaterial, while the other is robust with a rusted finish. inside, a glazed courtyard serves as an important shared public space for the cable factory as a whole.

JKMM dance house helsinki ILO
the dance house adds a contemporary layer to the old factory

image © tuomas uusheimo

JKMM dance house helsinki ILOimage © hannu rytky

JKMM dance house helsinki ILO
image © peter vuorenrinne / JKMM architects

finland’s first landmark dedicated solely to dance opens inside 1940s cable factory in helsinki

dance-house-helsinki-finland-jkmm-architects-ilo-architects-designboom-large

image © hannu rytky

image © peter vuorenrinne

finland’s first landmark dedicated solely to dance opens inside 1940s cable factory in helsinki
a glazed courtyard serves as an important shared public space

finland’s first landmark dedicated solely to dance opens inside 1940s cable factory in helsinkiimage © JKMM

finland’s first landmark dedicated solely to dance opens inside 1940s cable factory in helsinki
dancers and performers complete the architecture | image © tuomas uusheimo

dance-house-helsinki-finland-jkmm-architects-ilo-architects-designboom-large3

image © hannu rytky

finland’s first landmark dedicated solely to dance opens inside 1940s cable factory in helsinki
image © tuomas uusheimo

finland’s first landmark dedicated solely to dance opens inside 1940s cable factory in helsinkiimage © peter vuorenrinne

dance-house-helsinki-finland-jkmm-architects-ilo-architects-designboom-large2

image © tuomas uusheimo

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state-of-the-art black box theater
state-of-the-art black box theater
two suspended steel elevations bring in a weightless quality
two suspended steel elevations bring in a weightless quality
reflective and immaterial | image © tuomas uusheimo
reflective and immaterial | image © tuomas uusheimo
image © tuomas uusheimo
image © tuomas uusheimo
image © tuomas uusheimo
image © tuomas uusheimo
image © JKMM
image © JKMM
image © JKMM
image © JKMM
image © JKMM
image © JKMM

project info:

 

name: dance house helsinki / tanssin talo

architect: JKMM architects and here

location: helsinki, finland
function: black box theatres, event spaces, lobby, restaurant
size: 7000m2
client: cable factory and dance house helsinki

photography: tuomas uusheimo, hannu rytky, peter vuorenrinne

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