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Virtual Lecture: Akseli Gallen-Kallela and the Spirit of Finland: Landscape as Identity

painting of greenery in front of lake and blue sky
Jun 06
Lecture
Virtual Lecture: Akseli Gallen-Kallela and the Spirit of Finland: Landscape as Identity
Jun 06, 2021
10:00am - 11:00am PST

While Finland did not declare its independence until 1917, the foundation for that eventual political act was laid in the preceding decades through the agency of art, including Akseli Gallen-Kallela’s landscape paintings and mythological scenes inspired by the Kalevala, Finland’s national epic.

Born in 1865, on the western coast of Finland, at the time a Grand Duchy of the Russian Empire, Gallen-Kallela grew up speaking both Swedish and Finnish on his family farm. In 1884, he began his fine arts studies in Paris where he lived intermittently for the next six years. During this period, Gallen-Kallela developed the foundation for his vision of Finland as a culturally independent nation, using art to help form a national identity.

In this virtual talk, Dr. Janne Sirén, Peggy Pierce Elfvin Director of the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, discusses Akseli Gallen-Kallela’s aspiration to construct a sense of national identity for an unborn nation through the medium of visual art.

Cost: Free for Members; $5 general admission

About the speaker: 
Dr. Janne Sirén began his appointment as director of the Albright-Knox Art Gallery in April 2013. Prior to this, he served as director of Finland’s Helsinki Art Museum—one of the largest cultural institutions in the Nordic region—overseeing an active program of exhibitions, acquisitions, and museum development. Sirén received his PhD in 2001 from the Institute of Fine Arts at New York University.

Sirén served as director of the Tampere Art Museum in southern Finland from 2004 to 2007. Prior to this, he worked as Visiting Assistant Professor in the Department of Art History at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem (2000–2004), teaching courses in modern and contemporary art, aesthetics, museology, and critical theory.

At the Albright-Knox, Sirén has initiated and co-organized several major exhibitions, each attracting tens of thousands of visitors, including Anselm Kiefer: Beyond Landscape; Monet and the Impressionist Revolution, 1860–1910; Picasso: The Artist and His Models; Out of Sight! Art of the Senses; and We the People: New Art from the Collection, which featured some of the most imaginative and dynamic artists working today and their explorations of life and creativity in the twenty-first century. Sirén has demonstrated experience in community growth.

smiling man against colorful painting

Virtual Lecture: Akseli Gallen-Kallela and the Spirit of Finland: Landscape as Identity
Country State

While Finland did not declare its independence until 1917, the foundation for that eventual political act was laid in the preceding decades through the agency of art, including Akseli Gallen-Kallela’s landscape paintings and mythological scenes inspired by the Kalevala, Finland’s national epic.

Born in 1865, on the western coast of Finland, at the time a Grand Duchy of the Russian Empire, Gallen-Kallela grew up speaking both Swedish and Finnish on his family farm. In 1884, he began his fine arts studies in Paris where he lived intermittently for the next six years. During this period, Gallen-Kallela developed the foundation for his vision of Finland as a culturally independent nation, using art to help form a national identity.

In this virtual talk, Dr. Janne Sirén, Peggy Pierce Elfvin Director of the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, discusses Akseli Gallen-Kallela’s aspiration to construct a sense of national identity for an unborn nation through the medium of visual art.

Cost: Free for Members; $5 general admission

About the speaker: 
Dr. Janne Sirén began his appointment as director of the Albright-Knox Art Gallery in April 2013. Prior to this, he served as director of Finland’s Helsinki Art Museum—one of the largest cultural institutions in the Nordic region—overseeing an active program of exhibitions, acquisitions, and museum development. Sirén received his PhD in 2001 from the Institute of Fine Arts at New York University.

Sirén served as director of the Tampere Art Museum in southern Finland from 2004 to 2007. Prior to this, he worked as Visiting Assistant Professor in the Department of Art History at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem (2000–2004), teaching courses in modern and contemporary art, aesthetics, museology, and critical theory.

At the Albright-Knox, Sirén has initiated and co-organized several major exhibitions, each attracting tens of thousands of visitors, including Anselm Kiefer: Beyond Landscape; Monet and the Impressionist Revolution, 1860–1910; Picasso: The Artist and His Models; Out of Sight! Art of the Senses; and We the People: New Art from the Collection, which featured some of the most imaginative and dynamic artists working today and their explorations of life and creativity in the twenty-first century. Sirén has demonstrated experience in community growth.

smiling man against colorful painting

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