Travis Price

Travis Price Architect, Travis Price Architects A lecturer on the recent National Geographic Seven Continents Tour, Travis Price found himself for the first time on the streets of Kochi, India. Inside a Hindu shrine he encountered glass-encased statues of Catholic priests under giant Christian billboards draped in garlands, and a Buddha with a third eye sporting the nose of Alexander the Great. "Underneath all these cultural overlaps," recalls Price, "were the deeper origins of earliest India, wrapping the whole in silk and perfume and making it all at home."

For three decades as an architect, author, teacher, and philosopher Price has delighted in discovering these cultural intersections and metaphors that define our world. In his groundbreaking books The Archaeology of Tomorrow and the forthcoming Sojourns into the Ethnosphere, Price defines a vision for where architecture should be headed beyond green. In an award-winning architecture informed by ecology and mythology and in the pioneering Spirit of Place Program at the Catholic University of America that introduces new architects to the tenets of his vision, he restores spirit of place to modern design. "Finland is homeland to two of my favorite architects-Alvar Aalto and Eero Saarinen. The prospect of being around their work and underlying influences excites me. I love absorbing cultural vibes-people, nature, the eccentricities, and the earlier, deeper history-and then imagining new buildings and sharing the discovered hidden threads of that heritage with others."


Future Forward – Travis Price

An indefatigable explorer of myth on a lifelong quest to engage the spirit of place, architect Travis Price likens landing in Helsinki, recently named the 2012 Design Capital of the World by the International Council of Societies of Industrial Design (Icsid), to “entering a vast strawberry field of embedded design.” Says Price, “I found myself floating between products and buildings and digital technology and food and full living culture where everything was simple but not simplistic.” In contrast to this Nordic simplicity, he discovered an almost Asian influence expressing itself in such disparate sources as the Byzantine Uspenski Orthodox Church or a swath of baroque Marimekko fabric. Finland lies in the merging of those two worlds; it’s the emerging crossroads of the world.”

Read more

Journal of Travis Price on March 31

Day 2 / The Sacred and the Profane march on into April….. Kari whisked me from the superb landings of Mikko and Susanna into a whirlwind view of emerging and hitoric Helsinki….white sky, white snow, cream fronds…and then into the earth to be lifted into the heavens at the sacred masterpiece Temppeliaukio Church  by brothers Timo and Tuomo Suomalainen.  ….then on to the temple of Nokia…and others, desinger Kaisa Blomstedt discussing the state of Finnish Interiors … and stolling peeks ino the interior of Finnish retail therapies as cold winds, Mikko and Susanna of Planet Pluto swept me into a sublime dinner and view from Aalto’s Savoy Restaurant and the magic lights of Helsinki nights shimmered in Hei, Hei and super supper subconcious memories danced in my dreams.

Read more

DAY 3 — TUESDAY Kari, Mikko, Hilka, AW2 architects at reception……………

And the day began with 2 shocks! My all new Dell computer keyboard failed the day before! How to communicate??? And true to quiet precision the Finns deliver the extraordinary miracle of survival and triumph in the modern world a Finnish tech support for Dell has arranged a new keyboard to be delivered. A message appears on the screen saying it has arrived from US and within in minutes the technician has replaced it and I am running out the door up and running again in the cyber world. Everyone may live in buried snow here, but digitally they linked like no other….


Read more

DAY 4 — WEDNESDAY Kari, Teena, Minna, Nora, Mikko, Eeropekka “Eeris” Rislakki , Hannu

Striking out into a walk, new blocks and directions, minimalism, practical water ways, dancing radios, green flip flop trees, black and white Ming vases, and McDonald’s creeping in all around! Somehow here, it’s just another sculpture in yellow of Saarinen’s St Louis arch, the golden arches that is. It fries my American sensitivities , but its a part of the design exchange….I guess. (more…)

Read more

Journal of Travis Price on April 9

DAY 5– THURSDAY – Mikko, Irma-Riitta, Ami, Valeri, Susanna

This was a day less about “D”esign , but more as about the cultural powers behind design….my day is greeted by Mikko and our stopping at the harbor…. while grey , the landscape is full of a band of morning seekers headed to work, headed to meetings. In true fashion along the walk ways I see tour boats docked, ice breaking up from winter, the Byzantine church on the hill , the Aalto white box dead center…..( soon to be copied in a way as a new non contextual icon hit by Herzog and Demeuron ’s new hotel , the Swiss Ice Cube…. the orange tents are full of good cheer, good eats, and coffee, coffee, coffee… the elixir and antidote of dawn and grey skies…. (more…)

Read more


Helsinki is becoming a "Design-Driven city". Future strategies will include design as one of the spearheads for development. "Multidisciplinarity" describes the definition of "design" in the post-industrial phase of the modern world. Architecture, design education, fashion design, industrial design, interior design, landscape architecture, urban planning/design, design management, design research, service design, etc. will all be in the loop when Helsinki applies for the title of World Design Capital 2012.

The next 10-15 years will be an era of city planning, architecture and building constructions. The new harbour outside the city centre in Vuosaari has released large areas by the water-front for new purposes. Helsinki will face opportunities and challenges similar to those of, e.g. the city of Hamburg a decade ago.

All in all, this is a great moment for Mr Travis Price to enter the world of Helsinki. He will be hosted by Mr Kari Korkman, the founder and director of Helsinki Design Week, the annual festival for creative industries. During his visit Mr Price will become acquainted with the history of Finland and its renowned architecture and design. In addition, he will have the opportunity to meet a number of contemporaries in urban design, academics, arts, crafts, fashion, industry and - you never know - mystics.