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Provided by Finlandia University Gallery’s First Fruits offering / (rarity poses as truth) / advertisement (2021).

With the growing number of COVID in the country of copper, the Finlandia University Gallery of the Finnish American Heritage Center made the difficult decision to host the opening reception for the 31st exhibition in the Finnish American Artist Series. contemporaries on Zoom. Rita, a longtime friend of the artist, zoomed in from Duluth, friends from Mexico and Canada joined the call, making this show a truly international one.

Natalie Salminen Rude is the featured artist; his show is called “Inter · stice: (name) a small intermediate space. “ His work includes a series of compositions in oil, mixed media, gold leaf and encaustic. Encaustic is a technique using waxes, resins and pigments, producing both color and texture depending on the thickness of the wax. A thin layer of wax on the paper will create a translucent space, and the wax can also be used to layer paper, fabric, and other objects on a surface.

Within this series, we find works on canvas and panels, paper vases containing dried flowers, and in particular a large three-dimensional piece suspended from a wooden structure. Natalie’s work is very textured, very delicate and above all very complex.

“His desire is for viewers to pay attention and participate in their own investigations and solutions. Through attention, dialogue and the art of breaking ruptures, the rehumanization of our world is still possible.

There is an interesting play with light and dark; while many rooms have ascending darkness, others are lit from behind. Lilies bloom throughout this exhibition; lilies and light represent the hope that natural regeneration brings to a world where, as his mentor Jacques Ellul said, the cult of technology takes us away from the wisdom of our ancestors who were intimately linked to the natural world. One of my favorites from the show is a series of eight smaller pieces called “Lily among the thorns” the background is a collage of fashion designs and striped fabrics, and each has a pigmented wax lily. There is darkness but also light in every room, and although it is available for sale as individual works, the display looks really nice as a set.

One of the most interesting aspects of this show is that each piece is accompanied by a haiku; a three-line poem form originating in Japan. The haiku is meant to be a “Poetic assistance”; to help start a conversation about work.

While visiting the exhibit was a truly engaging experience, it was truly interesting to see this exhibit on screen, as the work was inspired by Natalie’s desire to stay away from screens throughout the year. 2020. She was stunned by the mental space that occurred. Over time, she found she was able to concentrate on her own care; meaning she had the power to decide where and how her attention was directed. The whole show invites the question of how and where we direct our attention, an important thing to consider in this media world where it is so easy to get drawn in so many directions.

This exhibition is the 31st in the Contemporary Finnish American Artist series and is part of the 125th anniversary of the University of Finlandia. “Inter · stice: (name) a small intermediate space” will run from December 4, 2021 to February 4, 2022. The Finlandia Gallery is located at 435 Quincy Street in Hancock and is open to the public Monday through Friday 9 am to 4 pm. You can also view Natalie’s recording of Reception Salminen Rude Zoom on the Gallery’s website at www.finlandia.edu/universitygallery/gallery-news-past-exhibits/.

The Copper Country Community Arts Center (CCCAC) in Hancock is inviting applications for the Art from the Kalevala – Animal Life exhibition. The Art of the Kalevala is an annual exhibition that takes place at the CCCAC in February 2022. The Kalevala is a 19th century poetic work compiled by Elias Lönnrot from Finnish and Karelian folklore and oral mythology. It is considered the national epic poem of Finland and is one of the most important works of Finnish literature. The Kalevala is rich in images of animals, including pike, swan, deer, bear and many more. Artists are invited to immerse themselves in the Kalevala and find a reference to one of the many animals that are an integral part of the stories. Artists can submit up to three works in any medium and are welcome to provide the Kalevala lines or passages that inspired the work. No entry fee is required. Send submissions to CCCAC 126 Quincy Street, Hancock between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. February 1-4, 2022. For questions or to make special arrangements, please contact Cynthia Cote at [email protected] with “Kalevala” in the memo line. For more information about the exhibit, visit the website www.coppercountryarts.com.

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