Iloniemi speaking at "What's Next for Brand" in the Build Up talks series
I began working in architectural PR in the mid-nineties and have since represented practices that are only just starting out to internationally highly regarded firms, like Arup, and to everything in between. Much of my work has been focussed on promoting studios, their projects including their exhibitions and books.
Over the years, I have organised many events, for example, at the Venice Architecture Biennale and World Architecture Festival. These have ranged from international symposia to panel discussions to parties, previews and launches.
My interest in promoting the work of architects was first initiated through my MA Dissertation for the University of Edinburgh researching how Alvar Aalto went about gaining international recognition outside of his native Finland. As a post-graduate I developed this interest further studying museology at the École du Louvre in Paris and, after that, Architectural History and Philosophy at the University of Cambridge as part of an M.Phil. taught by Dalibor Vesely and Peter Carl.
Before committing to architecture, I interned at UNESCO, the Victoria and Albert Museum and worked for Galerie Forsblom, a contemporary art gallery in Helsinki. This has led me to embrace a curatorial approach to PR that emphasises the roles of art history, museology and aesthetics. This in addition to a largely intuitive approach to understanding the subject through an early interest in art, architecture and design ... as well as PR (at age 15, I did a work placement with Marimekko's communications department in Helsinki!)
In addition to working in architectural PR for over 20 years, I have reflected on how architecture is promoted through a number of talks including as keynote speaker at IUAV Venice, mentoring at the Royal Institute of British Architects, teaching at the Architectural Association (Part III) and writing, most recently by guest editing an issue of AD. More on the AD below. Other publications include a chapter in An Architect's Guide to Fame (Routledge), Wonderland Manual Manuel for Emerging Architects (Birkhäuser), interviews, as well as a series of articles for ArchDaily.
In 2004 Wiley published my book Is It All About Image described as:
"...a behind-the-scenes quest for all the strategies that allow many architects to build a reputation..." (Label, Autumn 2005).
"This practice-based reflection provides critical insight into industry uses of images." (Nordisk Arkitekturforskning 2014)
2019 saw the publication of the November/ December AD issue on "The Identity of The Architect" that I have guest-edited. For a brief summary of the issue, please see below.
Nov/ Dec. 2019 issue of AD "The Identity of The Architect" with cover image by Adam Nathaniel Furman
"Founded in 1930, Architectural Design (AD) is an influential and prestigious publication. It combines the currency and topicality of a newsstand journal with the rigour and production qualities of a book. With an almost unrivalled reputation worldwide, it is consistently at the forefront of cultural thought and design." Autumn 2019 titles below:
I am originally from Helsinki and for my studies, I was awarded scholarships from the Finnish Cultural Fund, the Finnish Academy as well as the British Council. I have served as: Committee Member of Twentieth Century Society (and organised an Alvar Aalto trip to Finland for the C20 Society); Fellow of Royal Society of Arts; Trustee for The Campaign for Drawing; Founding Member of the Academicians’ Room at RA (Royal Academy of Arts).