On Dec. 2, the Guggenheim released the shortlist of six designs chosen from a huge batch of 1,715 submissions for its Guggenheim Helsinki Design Competition, and tomorrow, the institution will announce the winner. That leaves 1,714 designs that didn't win, all of which can be found on the competition website, some of which are ... well, unique, to be nice about it.

So we took a little time and perused the mammoth listing to reveal some of the weirdest, oddest, and certainly most unique submissions in the catalog. We picked the 25 shown here, but out of nearly 2,000 entries, we probably skipped over a few of your favorites though, so let us know if we missed anything.

Entry GH-128223385 by AJAA

Per the design brief: THERE ARE NO CORNERS! (Their all caps, not ours. We promise.)
It doesn't look like there are any walls to prevent you from falling out an onto the plaza below either ...

Entry GH-9128168761

From the architects' conceptual description: "The architecture may be PHENOMENARISTIC or RECIPRONARISTIC, TIMELY or PLACE LOCI. Silent Voice-Architecture Loci’s act as organizing devices common denominators for the multiple dimensions of programs and their evolution over time, and drive the projects featured in works of CREATION for Nature of SYNCHRONICITY."

Entry GH-44095710 by Artotec Ab [Art & Technology]

Add a couple of unicorns, and we're hooked.

Entry GH-8950225932

It's no wonder this entry, titled "Waves of Helsinki," was waved away by the jury.

Entry GH-4857747589

Maybe it can double as the set for a new reboot of the Stargate movie franchise?

Entry GH-8816398657 by Manal Rachdi Oxo Architects
On the plus side, this building doubles as a landing port for spaceships.

Entry GH-3250019923
 by DSMG Workshop
The name of this one? "Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World." Hmmm.

Entry GH-43223237

It looks like Mad Max and Imperator Furiosa are about to drive through the crowd.

GH-2045459988 by Trinity Plus One PYT LTD

Some of the other angles of this project make it look like a perfectly normal, ordinary wooden box, but from this view, it looks like a popsicle-stick-model that is too thin in the middle and is about to snap in half.


From the designers: "Today any kind of architectural design is possible but few are really desirable. The delirious visions of the so-called avant-garde arrive with a built in date of expiry and barely outlive their birth." In reaction, their "timeless architecture," apparently, ends up with a shape that looks like a chrome rear-projection TV.

GH-8441499456 by XDGA Xaveer De Geyter Architects

Certainly not as odd as some, but it does look a bit like someone made a mess in an aisle at the Container Store.

It looks a bit like a Transformer stuck in the snow, doesn't it?

GH-2258232490 by Alter-Urbanity

The deconstructed log cabin/wood stack look is strange enough, but the flying pig really puts this one over the top.


Well, Scandinavians do love black metal, so maybe that explains this one …

GH-3237248289 by Howcroft

Fun with Duplo blocks!

GH-7619605837 by  Atlas Architect Group

Apparently, this museum is BYOU (bring your own umbrella).


If this is a Rorschach test, then we see a line of tractor-trailers or a team of sled dogs.

GH-52299290 by PEA

Maybe it makes honey too.


We're having True Detective flashbacks from this one.

GH-8445841959 by ARM Architecture

From the designers: "Our building wonders whether architecture too is like these boys somehow, or like the angel even [from Hugo Sinberg's painting 'The Wounded Angel,' or otherwise like this story here, this theme, if that is what it is, this ideology or myth, this psychology, this reenactment or translation, this sense of hope or irony, this duty bound or just gain relief, this latent expectation, this suspicion or this reverence, this literalness or mysterious symbology." 

The design “borrows the typology of a traditional city block–Kortelli, and is rendered with surface charred wood reminiscent of a pre-fire Helsinki” with a whole lot of angelic imagery in the winged structures. Judging by this and the previous entry, there is lot of angelic imagery to go around, apparently.


From the designers: “The main idea for this proposal is a kind of 'wave,' a cultural wave which comes from overseas with Guggenheim initiative. Same wave brings us all contemporary international trends of art and visual culture. Wave also stops friendly in the harbor and brings us fresh possibilities to represent Finnish art as well.” Sure …


There’s a building in there, behind the strange, enormous façade that looks like a field of reeds in a wetland, we swear it.

GH-4241231286 by Arthur Cotton Moore Associates

This possibly could have been an early storyboard for a scene from The Avengers.

GH-2334682117 by Lacoste-Stevenson PTY LTD

Klaatu barada nikto !!!

Did we miss your favorite unusual submission in the Guggenheim Helsinki contest?
PIease let us know in the comments section below or share it with us on social media.