On arriving in mainland Finland I travelled to Salo to walk in one of their numerous forests and see their rural landscape. Then I visited Helsinki and payed particuar attention to their design stores and galleries as well as visiting their contemporary art gallery, Kiasma. Now I am on my way to Rovaniemi to catch a glimpse of Lapland, the land of the midnight sun and unforgiving nature.
Follow the link to Artek, a Finnish design company that has been operating since 1935 and still produces the world class products it is known for, as well as new and innovative design. The Finns are very proud of their design products and will keep these objects in their family for generations as well as buying the new ones. They believe that good design should be available for everyone, not just those who can afford expensive things. The objects themselves are thought through, have a respect for the material they use and the tradition from which they came. For a country that is so young compared to the rest of Europe they have done well to have a strong sense of who they are and produce objects that are uniquely theirs and are competitive in the world market.