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New photography exhibition at Helsinki Airport: world's most impressive air traffic control towers

Press release
7.7.2016 at 06:00
Art of the Airport Tower, a new exhibition by respected photographer Carolyn Russo opened at the airport, brings the world's most interesting control towers to the centre of Helsinki Airport.

The exhibition is created by Carolyn Russo, an American photographer at the Smithsonian, who has worked at the National Air and Space Museum since 1988 as a staff photographer and museum specialist in the Aeronautics Division with the National Air and Space Museum art collection.

The idea of taking photos of air traffic control towers came to her in 2006 when she photographed aircraft as abstractions for her book In Plane View: Abstractions of Flight.

– Often the first impression travellers have when they reach a new destination is the tower, and each tower tells a unique and important story about its airport, community, and culture. Collectively these towers represent many countries and cultures. They play a pivotal role in the vast network of air traffic control technology that brings people of the world closer together, Russo says.

Russo travelled to over 20 countries and photographed 85 historic and contemporary air traffic control towers to explore their varied forms and functions. This impressive undertaking culminated in the book Art of the Airport Tower, making these ordinary structures extraordinary.

The book has given inspiration to the exhibition of the same name now opened at Helsinki Airport.

Russo’s striking photographs reveal the architectural, cultural, and technological significance of each of the featured tower. The exhibition consists of eight photographs of air traffic control towers, with Helsinki and Oulu Airports representing Finland.

Carolyn Russo's photographs have been widely exhibited both solo and group exhibitions in the United States, Finland, and China.

Art of the Airport Tower exhibition at Helsinki Airport consists of eight photographs of air traffic control towers, with Helsinki and Oulu Airports representing Finland.

Aviation art at Helsinki Airport since 2007

Over the years, the idea of an aviation photo exhibition at Helsinki Airport created as a result of cooperation between Finavia, Aviation Writers of Finland and Merja Ailama-Mäkitalo, has illustrated the many aspects of aviation and flying as seen through the lenses of Finnish and internationally renowned photographers.

– Art activities at the airport are part of Finavia’s ArtPort concept, designed to offer passengers surprising new services in an airport environment. Changing twice a year, this photo exhibition is a popular attraction for the many friends of aviation, says Ville Haapasaari, director of Helsinki Airport at Finavia.

Set up nine years ago at Helsinki Airport, the exhibition area is located in the arrivals hall, on the entrance floor at terminal 2. Everyone visiting the airport has unrestricted access to the area. The free-of-charge exhibition is open 24/7.

The photo exhibition is jointly produced by Finavia, Finnair, Kamera magazine, Aviation Writers of Finland, Color-Kolmio, Epson, Rajala Pro Shop and Merja Ailama-Mäkitalo.

Art at Helsinki Airport

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