Who we are, dog and I

”Arkkivahti”, that is me, the Helsinki based architect SAFA Tarja Nurmi. I have come home, after having been out of town for a few months, ford instance in the university city of Tartu. The image is taken by me, and it shows the entrance side to one of my favourite new buildings that have recently taken into use. It is the new National Museum of Estonia, called ERM and designed by DGT Architects, now based in Paris.

”Arkkivahti” has had her own architecture blog for many years.

Now, at the beginning of the year 2017, ”Arkkivahti” starts to write as Tarja Nurmi.

”Arkkivahti” or ”Vahti” – meaning a watchdog – wrote earlier in third person. Some of the posts could, in that case, be written a bit tongue in cheek.

Arkkivahti / I have a dog and a good one at that. She is an Americanstaffordshire Terrier with a regal name (La) Reina. The dog often follows me on my architecture excursions or day trips, so also being Victim Number One of Architecture.

This is not a coming out, in any sense, since everyone has known who Arkkivahti is. By now, I have had over 500 000 readers or at least short views through clicks. Most of the readers are colleagues or people who are genuinely interested in architecture. Some readers have been just curious, and through Arkkivahti, checked what I am doing.

The ARKKIVAHTI blog has all the time been completely non-commercial and will so remain. Arkkivahti will later also accept supportive donations or other support, but all of it will be non commercial as well. As architecture writer and her company in creating the content for this blog, dog and I accept no free dinners or bubbly. But maybe some delicious bones would be welcome.

I will soon write about my best architecture experiences form 2016 and then start looking at what is happening in Finland and Helsinki. I have spent last autumn mostly in Tallinn, Estonia, working on a book about nest contemporary architecture in Estonia. About 35% of the text substance for the book already exists, but now I want to take some distance. It is always good with such projects.

I will return to Tallinn later this spring, to finish my work. More financing will also be needed for my work and costs, as often is the case  with this kind of projects. The aim is to publish an internationally relevant story and glimpse into Estonia and its best contemporary architecture.

I am also a long-time correspondent of the European A10magazine for architecture. Its Dutch publisher went belly up last spring and as a schock to all of us, took the magazine with it. After very much effort and a million stubborn negotiations with lawyers, the a10 will now reappear as critical, all-European architecture Internet publication.We will soon again be in full action. I am, of course, one of the members of the newly established COOP. The editor-in-chief is Indira van´t Klooster.

This is me, in Berlin, on my birthday after a long bicycle ride and a swim. A glass of sparkling ice-cold water surely was needed, before an Asian dinner with an old friend.


You can all have a look at the same image in the newly born publication, by choosing www.a10coop.eu and then go to ”correspondents”. We are a network of European architects and architecture writers, and I already know many of them. A10coop also has permission to publish the whole content of the magazines as pdf files – so please feel free to have aloof. Finnish architecture has been exceptionally well presented and also often made it to the cover. WE are only around 5,5 million and the publication has covered an area where the population is a few hundred million. Not a bad result for Finnish architects!

I also have, for years, written for several other publications. They include daily papers and culture or architecture magazines – foreign and domestic – and architecture reviews like ARKKITEHTI (published by SAFA, our organisation for Finnish architects). In the latest issue, there was one  article by me, about the OOPEAA / Anssi Lassila Periscope Tower in Seinäjoki.

So I now welcome you to be my readers on the new platform. Beginning from tomorrow, Arkkivahti will post a couple of articles every week, on this new site and written either in Finnish or in English. The same texts will for some time also appear in the old blogspot-based page.

My older blogs can be found at:



Welcome! Tervetuloa!

Tässä Koira, The Dog




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