‘Strange, joyful and eye-popping’ Storybook Helsinki and Beyond is currently available on the Apple iBookstore!
In a truly international collaborative jump, the wife of the American Ambassador to Finland, Cody Oreck, one designer by trade, teamed with a brilliant emerging artist from Romania, photographer Octavian Balea, to document the startlingly exuberant architecture of Finnish Jugend or National Romantic style.
“We’re from different generations, different continents—but found each other admiring the same stuff—which nobody talks much about here,” said Oreck from US Embassy Helsinki. “We call it Storybook style. The buildings of the chapter leading to independence and the design here—the story they were telling—it’s just incredibly cool, strong and tender at the same time.”
The big gift print edition by WSOY, one of Finland’s oldest and most prestigious publishing houses, which hit bookstores in early November, is already hard to find in certain circles, a surprising bestseller.
Enter epublio, a young Romanian digital publishing team, who morphed the book into a spectacular interactive eBook with online POI maps and virtual tour features, was launched on November 28, 2012 to the press from the top of Eliel Tower, an icon of the period, and never open to the public.
Bending book genres from design through art, history, photography and travel, the lyrically thoughtful text gives a glimpse into the story of how the small brave country of Finland used her ancient mythological poetry of the Kalevala and her love of nature to form a cultural identity separate and apart from Swedish and Russian rule.
Balea’s work is entirely on real film with vintage cameras dating as far back as 1908 when much of the action was taking place, giving the images a rare quality of light and dark, rich color.
Don’t miss it! For more information, go to www.storybookhelsinki.com.