Campus art competition

Winners in the campusart competition rooted in bioart and quantum physics



This public art competition seeks to find art proposals for a specific place on the Otaniemi campus area, namely the area between the Aalto University metro station, Otakaari 1, Learning Centre and Dipoli. The themes for the art competition will focus on sustainability, radical creativity and entrepreneurship, based on the University’s new strategy (

We are looking for artworks, which can also act as signs for finding one’s way around in Otaniemi. The artwork can also be made of several parts, which form some kind of a route (but it does not have to). The artwork should be made of durable materials both in aesthetic and materiality aspects. The Otaniemi campus is historically a remarkable place, yet simultaneously it is a place for building our future.

The competition encourages you to be brave with your ideas! At this stage, we are looking for a variety of great ideas for our common campus.

Who can participate?

This open art competition is for all Aalto community members who have a valid firstname. email address: students, staff and academics. At least one member of a team should have a valid email address. We encourage also multidisciplinary teams with members from various schools at Aalto to participate. All competition proposals should be anonymous.


A successful proposal will follow themes and the visions of public art at Aalto University. Aalto University has made a decision on complying with a one percent art principle in its building projects. The art percent principle is a funding model for art purchases, where approximately one percent of a building project's funds is allocated to art purchases. Aalto University applies this principle to new construction projects, renovation projects as well to infill development and infrastructure development. Art procurements are made by purchasing ready works of art, ordering site-specific art works or organizing art competitions.

The vision of public art at Aalto University is to address and raise questions about what it is to be a university, what we do together in society, and what constitutes the public. Based on these and other enquiries, public art is site specific and connects with the diversity of the university and its post-disciplinary communities, which extend beyond Otaniemi to global networks. Public artworks reflect this diversity through different art forms, materials, techniques and traditions.

The aim of public art across Aalto is to create a vibrant environment for experiencing the world through various perspectives and embracing imagination, intuition and exploration. Contemporary public art often raises critical questions about history, the present and the future, and reflects values of Aalto such as passion, courage, freedom, responsibility and integrity. These questions and values help guide the procurement of artworks at Aalto University.

More about public art at Aalto University:

Now we are looking for ideas in this competition. The aim is to find possible ideas, which can then be further developed and to be actually realized. A separate contract will be made for this.

Competition area

Images of the Competition Area.

The areas for art proposals are marked on the map in red.

Things to take into consideration in the competition area

The Aalto University campus area in Otaniemi is under a rapid change, and several development projects take place simultaneously. In the coming years, Jokeri Light Rail will be built through the competition area ( Walking routes from the metro to Dipoli will also be improved. Student Center and Aalto Studios are under development around the competition area.

Otaniemi has been classified as a nationally significant built cultural environment ( For this reason in Otaniemi, the aim is to adapt the changes to the characteristics and special features of the cultural environment. The Alvar Square (Alvarin aukio) and the outdoor areas closely connected to it are the most carefully protected built outdoor areas of the Otaniemi university campus. The conservation values of a significant built cultural environment must be taken into account.

Jury members

Ossi Naukkarinen, Vice President (chair)
Eeti Ahola, Student at ENG, AYY representative
Ville Jokela, Managing Director, Aalto Campus & Real Estate (ACRE)
Julia Lohman, Professor, ARTS
Elisa Mekler, Professor, SCI
Aapo Pihkala, Project manager, campus development
Alice Wickström, Doctoral student, BIZ

Presenting and coordinating: Outi Turpeinen, Art coordinator


1.6.-30.9.2020 Competition time
11/2020 Announcing the winner
2021-2022 Finalizing the art work on site

BUDGET frame

A total of 7000€ is available for the prizes. The jury will decide how to divide this sum. The maximum financial framework for the artworks is 120 000 €. This sum consists of artists’ fees and material costs for the artworks. There will be a separate budget for the installment costs. Please note that the area is fairly big and the jury can decide to select multiple art works to be finalized.


Be brave. Respect the themes and the surrounding architecture. Think of durability for both the idea and technique. Outside art works should be made of materials, which can stand our arctic weather. Make a good visualization. Let your ideas flow!

Handbook on the percent for art principle in Finland:


Please send questions about the competition to the competition coordinator The answers to questions will be uploaded to the competition website, so please check the competition site regularly.

Official competition site

The competition is supported by AYY and ACRE.

Working group

Outi Turpeinen, Art coordinator
Joel Himanen, Member of Board (AYY)
Satu Kankaala, Head of Business Development and Sustainability (ACRE)
Aapo Pihkala, Project manager, campus development

Graphic design: Fanni Perälä, MA student in Visual Communication Design/ Aalto University

Made with Aalto Studios :: Web Studio