I’m not sure how it is judged, or what entitles one to be the design capital of the world for just one year, but apparently Helsinki is it for 2012.
Aside from the advertising everywhere, including some giant pillars ensuring I knew it was the design capital, the main giveaway is Helsinki’s Design District. I highlight of the trip was definitely the Design Museum, which had some fascinating exhibits, featuring innovative products (literally) solving the world’s problems. I couldn’t help but giggle at the fact that it was very clear that the curator wanted the world to know he is NOT an artist, and that design and art a very different, with variations on the ‘function over form’ message all over the show.
Throughout the rest of the Design District there were a number of cool shops, hosting novel furniture creations, to clothes to kitchen wares. It was a really fun little area to check out, and very inspiring!