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Expanded version of Laura Könönen’s much loved public artwork No Heaven up in the Sky unveiled in Jätkäsaari


An artwork presented at the 2021 Helsinki Biennial has been permanently installed in Helsinki. The new version of artist Laura Könönen’s installation No Heaven up in the Sky has been expanded from the eight boulders seen at Alexander Battery on Vallisaari Island to a larger installation of 13 boulders measuring 20 meters in diameter and installed in Jätkäsaari’s Hyväntoivonpuisto Park.

Artist Laura Könönen’s work No Heaven up in the Sky consists of roughly sculpted boulders of various sizes. Each boulder has one polished surface spray-painted with azure car paint, with the colour gradually changing from dark to light. According to the artist, the boulders form a puzzle of a kind – as if pieces of the sky had randomly fallen to Earth. In the work,  both the sky, believed to be eternal, and stone, considered an unyielding material, break into pieces. It can be seen as a metaphor for our world where established truths are breaking and changing.

The work, curated by HAM Helsinki Art Museum, will be unveiled at a public event on Wednesday 19 June from 2 to 3 p.m. The event starts at Hyväntoivonkuja 5 and continues at the park with a presentation of the work. Head of Helsinki’s Culture and Leisure Division Juha Ahonen will unveil the work. The artist will be present at the event. 

Laura Könönen: No Heaven up in the Sky (detail), 2024. HAM Helsinki Art Museum. Photo: Sonja Hyytiäinen.

In her works, sculptor Laura Könönen (b. 1980) reflects on the fundamental longing underlying our life and the absurdity of existence. She often uses stone – especially black diorite from Korpilahti – in her works. According to Könönen, stone belongs to a different timeline than the existence of an individual. For her, stone symbolises “silence without human presence after all sound has disappeared”. 

The commission was made possible by Helsinki’s Percent for Art policy, which means that a portion of the city’s construction and renovation budget is set aside for public art. Könönen’s work was commissioned by the City of Helsinki’s Urban Environment Division and curated by HAM Helsinki Art Museum, which acts as an art expert in the city’s Percent for Art projects and manages the City of Helsinki’s art collection, to which the new works are added. The collection managed by HAM includes more than 200 works commissioned through the Percent for Art principle.