Marimekko celebrates Pride month with art installations in Helsinki, New York and Bangkok 

Finnish design house Marimekko celebrates Pride month 2023 by collaborating with three visual artists from Helsinki, New York and Bangkok. The company has commissioned each artist to create a unique artwork in their signature technique on a Marimekko store window. The starting point for each art piece was a section of the legendary quote by Marimekko’s Founder Armi Ratia, which she wrote in her diary at the age of 14: “There is only one strength – Love.” 

Marimekko has been an official partner of Helsinki Pride since 2018 and has been supporting the Finnish LGBTQIA+ artist community through art window collaborations in Helsinki for three years now. Marimekko has a long tradition of inviting artists and creatives from all walks of life to create bold and colorful prints to bring joy to the everyday lives of people. This year, using the store window as a canvas for art will expand to other cities as well as Marimekko exhibits original artworks by three LGBTQIA+ community artists: Helsinki-based visual and textile artist Anna-Karoliina Vainio, Brooklyn-based art director and illustrator Shanée Benjamin, and Bangkok-based illustrator Juli Baker and Summer. 

“We are excited to celebrate love with our global community during Pride month, but also every other month of the year. The Marimekko spirit has always been grounded in fairness, equality and inclusivity, which continue to serve as eternal sources of inspiration and a guiding principle for us in everything we do. We hope that these amazing artworks around the world will inspire many, celebrating love in all its forms”, says Sanna-Kaisa Niikko, Chief Marketing Officer at Marimekko. 

Meet the artists 

Anna-Karoliina Vainio 

Anna-Karoliina Vainio is a Helsinki-based visual and textile artist who works with soft, tactile materials to create glimpses into colorful and escapist realities. A graduate from Kankaanpää Art School, Vainio’s weaved, knotted and sewn worlds navigate between the past and the future. Her artworks take inspiration from craft history, symbolism and folklore and invite you to dive into a vividly colorful fantasy.  

Vainio’s artwork will be exhibited in Marimekko Aleksinkulma at Aleksanterinkatu 50, Helsinki from 19 June until 3 July 2023.  

Helsinki Pride parade takes place on Saturday 1 July 2023. 

Shanée Benjamin  

Shanée Benjamin is an art director and illustrator from Brooklyn, New York focusing on Gen-Z and Millennial content. With close to a decade of design experience, Benjamin made the leap into digital illustration, focusing passionately on telling the stories of LGBTQIA+ people of colors. Creating community and connection through art is her passion. 

Benjamin’s artwork will be exhibited in Marimekko New York at 97 Wooster St, NY from 31 May until 30 June 2023.  

New York Pride parade takes place on Sunday 25 June 2023. 

Juli Baker and Summer 

Juli Baker and Summer is a Bangkok-based artist of vibrant and youthful energy. Her use of bright colors and fluid lines create a sense of vibration, as if one can hear exuberant music notes accompanying the movement of the characters or subjects. Graduated from Chulalongkorn University with a degree in fashion, Baker started her artist career under the nom de plume Juli Baker and Summer in 2015. Her works often take inspiration from people, music, literature, films, everyday-life conversations and travelling.  

Baker’s artwork will be exhibited in Marimekko Central World at Atrium Zone, Rama I Rd, Pathum Wan, Bangkok from 1 June until 30 June 2023.  

Bangkok Pride parade takes place on Sunday 4 June 2023. 

Read more about the artists.