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Ilkka Suppanen (b.1968 Finland) is one of the world’s best known contemporary Finnish designers. Suppanen studied architecture at the Technical University of Helsinki, Interior and Furniture Design at the University of Art and Design Helsinki, with one year at Gerrit Rietveld Academie in Amsterdam. After graduation he founded Studio Suppanen (1995) in Helsinki. Suppanen was also one of the founding members of Snowcrash (1997), the groundbreaking design cooperative widely recognised as the re-inventors of Scandinavian design. The following year, Suppanen designed the now iconic Flying Carpet Divan (1998) for Cappellini.

Driven by the desire to improve the world around us, Studio Suppanen works with international clients in the fields of product, industrial, furniture design, and interior architecture. The studio also provides consultation for clients who want to make a transition to a more sustainable reality. Through a co-creative process, the company or organization is encouraged to challenge their own assumptions of their values in relation to a rapidly changing environment. Collaborations range from developing radical concepts for the automobile industry to social projects for the casteless in India and the homeless in Sao Paulo.

Ilkka Suppanen
Designer Ilkka Suppanen
Studio Suppanen, Helsinki

Ilkka Suppanen has continuously combined his practice with theoretical work, and frequently gives lectures and runs courses for institutions such as the Polytechnic University of Milan and the Estonian Art Academy. This way of working contributes to a knowledge-based ecosystem, where insights on design are given back to a new generation, and new perspectives are received in return.

Suppanen’s longstanding interest in the glass material has led to many collaborations with traditional craftsmen in Murano Venezia and resulted in the creation of unique glass pieces that are represented through galleries around the world.

The studio’s work has received numerous international design awards, been exhibited worldwide at institutions such as the Venice Architecture Biennale, and MoMA in New York, and is included in the permanent collections of museums such as Centre Pompidou in Paris and Nationalmuseum in Stockholm. For his contribution to the Scandinavian design scene, Ilkka Suppanen has been awarded two of the largest Nordic design awards; the Torsten and Wanja Söderberg Prize (2015), and The Kaj Franck Design Prize (2020).

“I believe that design is basically the act of changing existing situations into preferred ones.”
/ Ilkka Suppanen