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For Finnish architects, study tours abroad have always been one of their most important methods of working. Travelling is still important, even today. One topical example of this importance is the idiosyncratic architectural photographs taken by Jouni Kaipia in Asia and West Africa.

Jouni Kaipia takes pictures of people in their everyday living environment. He goes out of his way to find places where the architecture has been honed over thousands of years by natural conditions and local resources. In Kaipia’s photographs, the buildings themselves are members of the families who live in them and they are lived in as holy places. This harmony is disappearing, however, as globalisation dissolves the differences in building cultures.

Architecture is someone sitting on his or her front steps, peeking out of a window, hesitating on a staircase. The mediating space between one’s own nest and the outside world determines the true quality of architecture. Within this encounter – the simultaneity of intensity, intimacy and dignity – also resides the possibility of beauty.

The relationship between photographer and model is an encounter, too. Whether the model is a Burmese women having a quiet smoke or a priest conducting a Buddhist ceremony on the back of a pick-up truck, the decisive moment from Kaipia’s point of view is not the click of the shutter, but rather the nod of approval immediately beforehand.

Jouni Kaipia is an architect and graphic designer whose travel photographs have attracted attention both in Finland and abroad. He has been awarded an artist’s five-year State Grant by the National Council for Architecture, which comes under the Arts Council of Finland

For further information and photographs, please contact:

Mari Murtoniemi, acting Education Officer,, tel. +358 400 254 708. Press photos

Alvar Aalto Museum Gallery

Address Alvar Aallon katu 7, 40100 Jyväskylä

Admission fee 6/2€