Antti Laitinen’s Armour installed in Töölönlahti Park
Antti Laitinen: Armour, 2016 © HAM / Maija Toivanen
Armour, a temporary artwork by artist Antti Laitinen (b. 1975), has been installed in Töölönlahti Park. Shaped like a suit of armour for a tree, the steel sculpture alludes to issues in the coexistence between nature and humanity and is thematically appropriate for an urban park. Rising up to a height of more than five metres, the work is located on a small hill at the corner of Töölönlahdenkatu and Karamzininranta, next to an entryway to the park.
Antti Laitinen made the piece by cladding an existing tree in polished steel plate armour. He then took the armour apart and reassembled it around a steel armature. Empty and dissociated from the tree, the piece looks like it was put in storage after use.
“Armour was most commonly used by knights and their horses, but sometimes also by war elephants. The best suits of armour were custom built for their user. To my knowledge, no tree armour has previously been built.”
Antti Laitinen represented Finland at the 2013 Venice Art Biennale. He has created several public works of art in Finland and abroad. Antti Laitinen is known for his versatile use of materials and performative works. In one of his performative pieces he sailed across the Gulf of Finland in a self-built Bark Boat in 2011.
Armour is a piece of sculpture commissioned by the Helsinki Public Works Department. HAM (Helsinki Art Museum) served as the art expert in the project.