New Marimekko print comes to life at Lux Helsinki light festival in celebration of the 100th anniversary of Finland's independence

17 November 2016

During 2017, the 100th anniversary of Finland's independence, Marimekko will organise several cooperative projects around design and art. The year will start with a spectacular collaboration with the Lux Helsinki light festival illuminating the city centre from 5 to 9 January. Marimekko and print designer Maija Louekari will take part in the creation of an artwork combining animation, lights and print design. The artwork, to be displayed on the wall of the Bank of Finland on Kirkkokatu street, is based on a new Marimekko pattern designed in celebration of Finland's centenary.

Marimekko has for decades travelled in the borderland between art and design, bringing colours and patterns as well as functional products to people's everyday lives. To celebrate the 100-year-old Finland, the company will launch a pattern entitled Veljekset (brothers) created by Maija Louekari, one of Marimekko's younger-generation print designers. The design was inspired by Finnish folk tales and it depicts animals that live in the forests of Finland. At Lux Helsinki, the Veljekset pattern will come to life in Maija Louekari's artwork, through which Marimekko wants to offer the residents of the city a story-like experience and inspire them to dream colourful dreams in the middle of the darkest winter - and also remind them of how fascinating their northern country is.

"The Veljekset animation and light artwork will bring our wild and exotic north to the wintry city centre, reminding us city dwellers of our forests that are still inhabited by strong, expressive animals. I designed the Veljekset pattern inspired by the main characters in Finnish folk tales, the so-called totem animals, for Marimekko in celebration of the 100-year-old Finland. With its lights, the Lux Helsinki festival will bring to life what on printed fabric stands still," says print designer Maija Louekari.

"We will create bold patterns for Finland during the centenary year. We want to contribute to building a successful future for our home country by doing things together open-mindedly. Throughout the year, we will encourage participation in and establish opportunities for bold actions and innovation, even in some unexpected ways. We are excited about the light artwork collaboration with our print designer Maija Louekari and Lux Helsinki, which will kick off the anniversary celebrations. Through this artwork, we can together provide a bright and inspiring breathing space in the midst of the winter darkness for local residents as well as visitors to Helsinki," says Tiina Alahuhta-Kasko, President and CEO of Marimekko.

All Lux Helsinki's light artworks, including Veljekset by Maija Louekari, will be on view in the city centre from 5 to 9 January 2017 between 5pm and 10pm. More information about the festival can be found at www.luxhelsinki.fi.