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Back to the arts

SuvilahtiDIY:DIYYesterdayGoneTomorrow!

“It’s fun to skate at Suvilahti – I think Suvilahti skatepark in Helsinki should not be removed due to other buildings, because it’s fun to skate there with friends and it’s close by. If they tear down the Suvilahti skatepark, it would take time to build a new skatepark. In the summertime I visit Suvilahti skatepark almost everyday with my friends.” – Iivari Salo, 11 years old, Helsinki

At best skating happens in moments that rarely leave any avidence behind. In skateboarding you don’t keep score of goals, but a picture can capture a similar moment. Summer night sessions with your friends where you challenge each other and yourself in good spirit. Sometimes it can take hours to do a trick just for one photo, but at best it might be just a few tries.

Suvilahti DIY lives for these moments, events and sessions, whether you are with a small group or in front of a big audience. In the end succesful trick is a one-time experience, but sometimes the movement of a skater is captured into an iconic memory of a moment, where everything came together and the skater landed successfully from a high ramp.

Suvilahti DIY is more than just under the threat of demolition. The city of Helsinki has almost already decided on the demolition. What happens then? Thousands of free work hours and hundreds of thousands concrete masses from sponsorships are being left under the demolition machines. It still remains a question, how this will be compensated. If we can’t save Suvilahti skatepark, let’s at least save its spirit. #SAVESUVILAHTIDIY

All pieces of the exhibition are for sale – Contact the artists directly via Instagram – Pieces will be handed over after Flow Festival

Iivari Salo, 11 years Instagram

Iivari began his artistic career when he was just two years old, appearing in a film directed by Teemu Nikki. Along with his occasional acting, Iivari’s hobbies include skateboarding, Optimist sailing, climbing, and snowboarding. The plans to dismantle Suvilahti DIY skatepark invoked Iivari to write an opinion piece for Finland’s largest newspaper Helsingin Sanomat, which also attracted attention among city policy-makers.

Olavi Salo, 9 years Instagram
Olavi is a regular visitor at the Suvilahti DIY. He began skateboarding around the same time as he did walking, and can often be seen pumping the steep curves of Suvilahti’s pool. He has done art occasionally and his internationally most acclaimed work is the graphic for CAPiTA Navigator 158 (2020) snowboard. Olavi is also an eager protector of nature and a founding member of the Moi environment organization.

Riikka Karmala Instagram
Riikka Karmala is a skateboarder and digital artist, and one of Finland’s best female transition skaters. Karmala also participated in the project Chasing The Spot, which toured the trials for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic games.

Oona Markkanen Instagram
Oona Markkanen is a Helsinki-based skateboarder, photographer, and documentarist. Markkanen has studied documentary filmmaking and photojournalism. She has filmed the Tehdään se yhdessä (Let’s do it together, 2021) documentary film about Suvilahti directed by Ines Särkkä and directed a documentary film Toi mitä sä teit oli mahtavaa (What you did was awesome, 2020) about female skateboarders.
www.oonamarkkanen.com

Samu Karvonen Instagram 
Samu Karvonen is a long-time skateboarding professional, photographer, and coach. He has been a part of building and developing the Suvilahti DIY skatepark since its early days. Samu is also known for his extensive career in the Finnish Skateboarding Association, as well as for being one of the producers of Finland’s largest skateboarding event HELride.
www.samukarvonen.com

Mikko Kempas Instagram 
Mikko Kempas is a long-standing multi-professional in the Finnish skateboarding media landscape. He is a skateboarder, graphic designer, and photographer. Kempas has been a part of Numero magazine, Happy Hour Skateboards, and Hang Up magazine, to name a few. Kempas has photographed skateboarding for about ten years.
www.mikkokempas.com

Justus Hirvi Instagram
Justus Hirvi is a photographer, spot builder, and an urban explorer. During the past 15 years, Justus has shot skateboarding globally for industry magazines and brands.

Joni Kiiskilä Instagram
Joni Kiiskilä is a skateboarder and cultural promoter, as well as an active member and a defender of Suvilahti DIY. Kiiskilä is a builder of sustainable values who has participated in Klapi Streetboards, Lamina, and the restoration of the cityscape. Kiiskilä has photographed urban the city architecture on film for five years.

Wilson Mäkelä Instagram
Wilson Mäkelä is a legendary skateboarder and up-and-coming artist. His works are highly topical, and his art combines his love for skateboarding and music. He is inspired by the urban environment and prefers to work improvising.

Keke Leppälä Instagram
Keke Leppälä is a well-traveled professional photographer known for snowboarding and skateboarding alike. Impressive lighting, angles, and sceneries are some of Leppälä’s trademarks in skateboard photography. In Suvilahti, Leppälä likes to climb the light pole to get his angles from a higher perspective. Leppälä has executed numerous exhibitions on skateboarding globally, including at Flow Festival in 2018 and 2019. He is also an active member of Suvilahti DIY.
www.kekeleppala.com