A work of modern art made of UPM’s wood plastic composite at the Venice Biennale

Archive 2.6.2009 0:00 EEST

(UPM, Helsinki, 2 June 2009 at 9.30) – UPM’s wood plastic composite will appear this summer in the imaginative floor solution of a new terrace café at the Venice Biennale. The space used as a café has been designed by the German artist Tobias Rehberger, and it forms one element of the Biennale’s renewed historical principal site.

Produced mainly from recycled materials, the UPM ProFi Deck decking board appears at the Venice Biennale as part of a work which also serves as a café at the brand-new Palazzo delle Esposizioni. “The work was inspired by the camouflage painting made by artists during the First World War to conceal British battleships and merchant ships from enemy eyes,” Rehberger says as he describes the background of his work.

A geometrical pattern dominates the café space, covering the walls, floor and some furniture and continuing out onto the terrace. The terrace is made of Night Sky Black and Marble White UPM ProFi Deck decking boards.

Ecology and durability of material as selection criteria
According to Rehberger, the UPM ProFi Deck board is an excellent solution for creating a durable pattern on a terrace. “The colour selection was a significant factor when selecting the material, of course, but what counted most for me was the ecological aspect and the durability of the material. It is fantastic to create something new from recycled material,” states Rehberger.

Covering an area of approximately 133 square metres, the terrace is in place throughout the year. This way the natural characteristics of the construction material come into their own. UPM ProFi Deck has a hard wearing surface with low moisture absorbtion. It is also slip-safe in a damp environment thanks to its high friction surface. This colourful work of art can be admired in Venice for a long time. UPM ProFi does not contain any lignin, and so it retains its colour well year after year.

Markku Koivisto, Director, UPM ProFi Business Area, is pleased with the good cooperation. “The floor of the café is unique. We are particularly delighted with the innovative use of black and white. Besides, the café is an excellent environment for our product, which easily meets the tough requirements imposed on a public space used round the year.”

UPM manufactured a few orange, purple and yellow colour tiles specially for the artwork. They have the same shape as the UPM ProFi Floor tiles made of composite material.

Arranged every second year, the Venice Biennale attracts hundreds of thousands of modern art lovers to Italy. The historical main site of the exhibition is the Giardini di Castello park, where the pavilions of the different countries are located. The Palazzo delle Esposizioni della Biennale has undergone extensive renovations, and it no longer shuts down after the Biennale. Instead, it offers the public permanent exhibitions, a reopened library of modern art, a bookshop and training premises throughout the year.

Tobias Rehberger is a German artist who started working in the early nineties and has became famous for his various forms of artistic outputs: sculptures, industrial objects and handcrafted articles.

For further information, please contact:
Markku Koivisto, Director UPM ProFi Business Area, tel. +358 040 861 2852

UPM, Corporate Communications
Media Desk, tel. +358 40 588 3284

Images may be downloaded under this news release on UPM’s internet site at www.upm-kymmene.fi > Media > News

Image 1 (Tobias Rehberger): Tobias Rehberger was inspired by the camouflage painting made during the 1st World War to conceal battleships.

Image 2 (aerial view, Tobias Rehberger): A geometrical pattern dominates the café space, covering the walls, floor and some furniture and continuing onto the terrace.

The UPM ProFi business area develops, produces, markets and sells high-quality wood plastic products for different end uses. UPM ProFi is an innovative and environmentally friendly material that uses recycled paper and plastic from labelstock production as its main raw material. For further information, go to www.upmprofi.fi.

UPM is one of the world's leading forest industry groups. UPM consists of three Business Groups: Energy and Pulp, Paper, and Engineered materials. Our competitiveness is based on cost leadership, change readiness and leading innovation. The Group employs around 24,000 people and it has production facilities in 14 countries. In 2008, UPM made sales of EUR 9.5 billion. UPM's shares are listed on the NASDAQ OMX Helsinki stock exchange.