Wednesday, June 05, 2013

Finlandia Gallery to host "Kokoelmasta" exhibit of art by Finnish and Finnish American artists, opening June 6

Marja Lianko, "Victory Garden No. 9." Acrylic and mixed media. (Photos courtesy Finlandia University)

HANCOCK -- In conjunction with FinnFest USA 2013, the Finlandia University Gallery, Hancock, will exhibit works by 29 Finnish American and Finnish artists, all from the gallery’s permanent collection, from June 6 through September 4, 2013. The gallery is located in the Finnish American Heritage Center, Hancock.

An opening reception for the exhibit, which is titled, "Kokoelmasta," will take place from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the gallery Thursday, June 6. The reception is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served.

Joyce Koskenmaki, "Birches and Sunset." Oil on linen.

Since 1990, the Finlandia University Gallery has presented the annual Contemporary Finnish American Artist Series, as well as numerous exhibits of work by living Finnish artists. Carrie Flaspohler, gallery director, says many of these artists have generously donated pieces of their work to the Finlandia University Gallery and a number of local art patrons have also donated artwork to the gallery.

"I am always grateful for the generosity of these artists and patrons and for their long term commitment to the gallery," Flaspohler says. "They are the foundation that has made Finlandia University Gallery one of the leading exhibitors of Finnish and Finnish American art in the United States."

Sixteen new pieces have been added to the Finlandia University Gallery’s collection this year, including four new works from Finnish artists and 12 by Finnish American artists. The new work includes a stainless steel sculpture, handmade jewelry, paintings, architectural designs, tapestry, printmaking, and mixed media work.

Bruce Niemi, "Rising Together." Stainless steel.

"It is wonderful to see Finlandia University’s art collection grow in such a significant way. The Finnish and Finnish American artists that I have worked with at the gallery are leaders in the contemporary art community," Flaspohler says.

The artists and patrons who made recent donations will be recognized at a reception during FinnFest USA 2013. The date and time will be announced shortly.

Included in this summer’s exhibit are Finnish artists Anna Alapuro, Jari Arffman, Ariadna Donner, Anna-Riitta Haavisto, Aura Jylhä-Vuorio, Aino Martikainen, Ilkka Väätti, Kristian Venäläinen, and Tatu Vuorio.

Anna-Riitta Haavisto, "Puzzle VIII," 2011. Mixed technique / stainless steel, rubber.

The featured Finnish American artists are Rudy Autio, Elsa Bekkala, Tiffany Besonen, Petri Flint, Marlene Ekola Gerberick, Yeshe Helander, Gladys Koski Holmes, Gerald Immonen, Dina Kantor, Tia Salmela Keobounpheng, Vaino Kola, Joyce Koskenmaki, Désirée Koslin, Marja Lianko, John Lundeen, Arno Rafael Minkkinen, Bruce Niemi, Kathleen Oettinger, David Salmela, and Tarmo Watia.

Tia Salmela Keobounpheng, SILVERCOCOON Jewelry, Jewelry stand: FLOTIFORM. "Minus-Plus" jewelry stand -- designed by Steven Swanson with Tia Salmela Keobounpheng.

The exhibit catalog published for the 2011 Contemporary Finnish American Artist Series 20th Year Retrospective will be available for purchase during FinnFest USA, June 17 to 22, 2013. The 48-page soft cover book includes 19 full-color reproductions of the artwork featured in the 2011 retrospective exhibit, and detailed artist biographical information.

The Finlandia University Gallery is in the Finnish American Heritage Center, 435 Quincy Street, Hancock. Gallery hours are Monday to Friday 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., or by appointment. Please call 906-487-7500 for more information.

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