Latimeria is a Finnish design company run by Juha Luukkonen and founded in 1994. Latimeria studio is based in Askola, in the middle of the Finnish countryside, 40 minutes from the Helsinki airport.
What is your philosophy?
We regard ourselves as poets, but without using words. Although we work with a material which is perceived as cold and hard, we aim to create sensitive and emotional products. Each object which leaves our studio is discussed in great detail and carefully finished. Here we feel we have been successful.
Where do you get your inspiration?
From very many things. Sometimes it can simply be a piece of metal on the floor, sometimes music, sometimes from a particular type of technology.
Take for example our Tree Series. Here we wanted to work with laser-cutting techniques and create a product which would otherwise be impossible to produce in any other way. Design work started in winter when the trees were without leaves. And there it was, a complex natural form created by laser. Since we had already produced servers, the pasta server was a very natural choice as the first Tree product.
And the sustainability of your products?
The essence of the design process is to produce long-lasting items using ecologically-friendly materials.
Manufacturing is based on recycling, and ferrous scrap is used as a major raw material, for both the metal itself and for many items directly.
At the end of its lifespan, stainless steel can actually be recycled to produce the same quality of steel without a loss of its natural properties. However, Latimeria products are meant to be passed down from generation to generation.
All Latimeria products are produced in Finland using 100% Finnish raw materials to guarantee environmental, social, and economic standards.
What does Latimeria mean?
Latimeria is a rare genus of fish that is found along the coastlines of the Indonesian Ocean and is known as the coelacanth; fossils can be seen in the British Museum.
Why did you choose the name Latimeria?
Juha's passion has always been fish and fishing. In the early years of Latimeria we used old, rough, rust-decorated iron in our products. The name Latimeria combines two important things: Juha’s passion, and beauty brought on by the passage of time.