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Unique ceramics collection designed for Aalto EE by design students

Aalto EE’s collection of over 200 pieces of art will now be complemented with 12 unique handmade ceramic vases, made in the birth place of porcelain in Jingdezhen, China.
Collin elkoff: Enkidu Collection.

"As part of our societal impact, we want to celebrate the talent of Aalto University and give exceptional learning experiences for the students. It is also rewarding to be able to give this possibility to the students to show their unique talent during the studies”, says Dr. Pekka Mattila, Group Managing Director, Aalto University Executive Education (Aalto EE) and Professor of Practice, Aalto University.

Six design students and three teachers from Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture, specialized in ceramics travelled to Jingdezhen, China, the source and birth place of porcelain manufacturing. During their stay in March 2018 they worked in a ceramic studio provided by the Jingdezhen Ceramic Institute.

The works were made on the spot during a three week workshop in the ceramic studio reserved to visiting international artists. The students worked each on their own design, co-operating with ocal craftsmen: throwers, trimmers, kiln masters as well as porcelain painter. The pieces were fired, packed and shipped to Finland at the end of the stay.
 
Ambitious and motivating assignment 

Before the trip to China, the students Saija Halko, Nikolo Kerimov, Matias Liimatainen, Maria Punkkinen, Collin Velkoff and Man Yau visited Aalto EE premises and listened to customers wishes as well as the florists’ views.

“We emphasize co-operative projects in studies many times, but of course in this case the trip to Jingdezhen, sort of a pilgrimage place for ceramists, brought the project to another level. Having simultaneously the brief given from Aalto EE gave students a high motivation to their work. High quality artistic approach brought together with functional objects is in the core of design”, states lecturer Nathalie Lautenbacher from the Department of Design at the School of Arts, Design and Architecture.

The group of students took up the job very ambitiously. They learned a lot about the local culture, different ways of communication, work methods and materials. “The students' own, strong artistic vision is well displayed in the results. I believe the experience was mind-opening and it also opened new doors for our talented students”, says Lautenbacher.

The final pieces of works will be presented in an event in Aalto EE premises in Helsinki in the beginning of June 2018. Physical objects and a documentary film of the travel and work process, filmed by Priska Falin, will be premiered in the vernissage 11 June. Students have made a travel journal for Aalto Leaders’ Insight. The exhibition will be set up also in Väre, Otaniemi, in September 2018.

For more information: 

Dr. Pekka Mattila, Group Managing Director, Professor of Practice, Aalto University Executive Education Ltd, Tel.: +358 40 738 7221, [email protected]

Lecturer Nathalie Lautenbacher, Department of Design, Aalto ARTS, Tel.: +358 50 384 4695, [email protected]

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