Karviaistie School Renovation and Extension
- Kirsti Sivén & Asko Takala
Helsinki, Finland, 2002
The school for special-needs education has only around 90 pupils. It consists of two older school buildings joined together by the new part constructed in wood. The idea was to provide a warm and protective environment, like a welcoming embrace, as well as a kind of path which ties the spaces together. Every year the staff and children together create an artistic-musical performance; the show, including the stage set and costumes, is produced together. This special event provided the guidelines for the distribution of spaces. The colours are subdued and the court-side gallery serves several communicative purposes. The atmosphere is that of a village school but with well-proportioned modern parts. The key feature in the school’s pedagogical strategy is to make things by hand and together. Pieces of contemporary art by a professional artist are integrated into the building, but great attention is also given by presenting the children’s own work.
The school was presented in the 0203 Exhibition in the Museum of Finnish Architecture and published also in a book “Schools and Kindergartens: A Design Manual”, Birkhauser, 2007.