The Kaj Franck Design Prize of 2015, awarded by Design Forum Finland, was given last November to designer, glass artist Markku Salo. The colourful prize exhibition, displaying Salo's oeuvre, will be on show at Habitare furniture, interior decoration and design fair 7–11 September 2016. The Kaj Franck Design Prize is one of the most notable design prizes in Finland and was awarded for the 24th time in 2015.
Designer, glass artist Markku Salo (b. 1954) is known as a technically versatile and artistically solid designer deeply versed in the possibilities of his material. Since 1983, Salo has worked in Nuutajärvi Glass Village, creating both mass production and art glass. Markku Salo is particularly known as the developer and user of the rare pâte de verre kilncasting method. He has also joined glass with e.g. metal netting, wood or stone.
Markku Salo has designed glassware for serial production e.g. for Iittala. He also has his own brand, Markku Salo Design. All the items of his own collection are made at Nuutajärvi Glassworks. Salo's serial production is functional and practical while his glass art is expressive and even surprising.
The Kaj Franck Prize jury valued Markku Salo's long and versatile career. Particularly important have been his efforts to preserve glassmaking at Nuutajärvi. When glass manufacturing was threatened there in the early 2000s, Salo, together with other artists and glassblowers, founded the Lasikomppania society and had a new glasshouse built. The glasshouse has preserved the heritage of glassmaking in the village and permitted the continuation of occupations in the glass sector.
Apart from his career as a glass artist and designer, Markku Salo has also worked as a teacher. He has created design projects for Salora, Nuutajärvi Glassworks, Arabia, Aarikka, Lundia, and Iittala. Since 1987 Salo has held around forty solo exhibitions in Finland, Europe, and South Korea. His works can be found in several museums both in Finland and abroad.
Design Forum Finland's Kaj Franck Design Prize is awarded annually to a designer or team innovatively creating both high-quality industrial design and unique, one-off works. The winners of the prize represent comprehensively top Finnish design. The prize sum of €10,000 is donated by the Finnish Fair Foundation.
Cries and Whispers
Markku Salo speaks about his work as a designer in an interview by Sami Sykkö at Habitare's ahead! arena Sat 10 September and Sun 11 September at 11–11.30 am.
Kaj Franck Design Prize 2015 – Markku Salo 7–11 September 2016
Habitare, stand 6m149, Messukeskus Helsinki, Expo and Convention Centre
Design Forum Finland, Project Manager Laila Alanen
laila.alanen(a)designforum.fi, +358 (0)50 548 4114