Past Gallery Exhibits
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Past Gallery Exhibits

 Oct 24 to Nov 22

 Mikko Kallio: The Magician

Mikko KallioFantastical beings, wandering ascetics, clowns and high-spirited acrobats inhabit the work of Finnish artist Mikko Kallio.  Floating between earth and sky, Kallio’s characters create a world not found in reality.  His work examines both humanity and spirituality by exploring the playful world of a child's imagination and the wondrous worlds of the magician, who can make the impossible possible. Kallio lives in Tampere, Finland and spent 2012 working in New York City.  His work has been exhibited internationally and is in the collection of The State of Finland and the Helsinki Art Museum.


Sept 12 to Oct 16

 Robert Hower: Personal Space  Universal Space

How do our youthful perceptions and interactions with the world shape us?  How do we carry forward our interactions with culture, space, form and light.  Robert Hower’s work addresses what is essential and fundamental in our experiences of space, time, and our physical and psychological environments. Through the interplay of form and light, interpreted through the lens of our associations, Hower’s work reveals the poetry of place.

June 6 to September 4, 2013

Kokoelmasta: Finnish and Finnish American Art from the Finlandia University Collection

In coordination with FinnFest USA 2013

Since 1990, the Finlandia University Gallery has advanced the understanding of Finnish and Finnish American art through its annual Contemporary Finnish American Artist series, and through additional exhibitions featuring the work of living Finnish artists. This exhibit of work by both Finnish American and Finnish artists, from the gallery's permanent collection, is presented in conjunction with FinnFest USA 2013.



April 28 to May 25, 2012 

2012 Diploma Works Exhibition

 Presented annually, the Diploma Works exhibit features the work of International School of Art and Design graduating BFA students. The exhibit pieces represent each graduating student's final body of work and take the form of intensive research projects, series of individual artworks, or design prototypes.


March 29 to April 18, 2012 

Finlandia University International School of Art & Design Juried Student Exhibition

The annual juried exhibition includes work by International School of Art & Design students studying the fine art and design disciplines of drawing, painting and illustration, ceramic and glass, fiber and fashion design, sculpture, product and interior design, and graphic design and digital media.

February 16 to March 20 -- Aimo Hyvärinen :SNOW & ICE

 January 19 to February 11 -- Visual Voices

VSA Michigan, The State Organization on Arts and Disability

Engage, Create, Empower...these words capture the essence of Visual Voices, a traveling exhibit curated by VSA Michigan, The State Organization on Arts and Disability.  The exhibit features the work of 48 Michigan artists, including Christina Coon and Paul Waisanen, both of Hancock. Coon and Waisanen are long-time participants in a VSA-sponsored art class at Hancock's Oak House, a group home for individuals with mild to moderate developmental disabilities.

Dec 1, 2011 to Jan 14, 2012-- Contemporary Finnish American Artist Series 20th Year Retrospective

 The year 2011 marks the 20th anniversary of the Contemporary Finnish-American Artist Series at the Finlandia University Gallery in Hancock, Michigan. This retrospective exhibit includes all 19 artists from the series.

The long-running series, the only art exhibition of its kind in the U.S., showcases the work of prominent Finnish-American artists and designers, and has meaningfully advanced the appreciation of fine art and design within the Finnish American community.

Inspiration found in their Finnish ancestry plays a strong role in the work of these artists. Some draw from stories of Finland heard in their youth, while others incorporate life lessons from their immigrant grandparents. Some summon the strong connection to nature so prominent in Finland, and others are influenced by the strength of contemporary Finnish art and culture.

Oct 27 to Nov 22, 2011 -- Women and Water Rights II:Rivers of Regeneration

Liz Dodson and James Brenner, Amada Mayumi, Cheryl  Wilgren, Rosa Musket,  Christine Flavin, Yueh-mei Cheng, Melissa Hronkin, Robert Grame, Phyllis Fredendall, and Denise Vandeville

Rosa Musket, Drowning

"We are facing a global water crisis."  These words provided the motivation for a juried exhibit and symposium organized by the Women's Caucus for Art, Minnesota Chapter held at the Katherine Nash Gallery on the University of Minnesota Campus, 2010.  Finlandia University's Women and Water Rights II: Rivers of Regeneration will feature artwork from four artists who participated in the Minnesota exhibit along with local and regional artists. This art exhibition and related programs will underscore the message that water access is a universal human right.









Sept 22- Oct 22, 2011  -- Tracy Krumm and Carol Lambert

Carol Lambert HotdogsExplorations: The Flexible Linear Element

Tracy Krumm's work embraces traditionally "domestic" and gender-specific techniques, like crochet and blacksmithing, transforming her materials into conceptual explorations of feminism, popular culture, personal history and identity. For this exhibit, Krumm will be creating a sculpture utilizing knitted shapes made by Hubbell resident, 76 year old Carol Lambert. Krumm will be incorporating a number of these unwrapped shapes, along with over a mile of handmade ropes made by twining, finger knitting and finger crochet, into different interlaced and knotted textile structures. 

January 20 to February 19, 2011 - Ilkka Väätti: Mundus

Illka Vaatti, "Sura" Illka Vaatti, "Sura"Finnish artist Ilkka Väätti has been described as a pictorial kleptomaniac, and the artist himself would be the first to admit his guilt. Choosing details from the pictorial language of past cultures, Väätti's modernist compositions incorporate fragments from medieval paintings, from Asian mandalas, or from a mosaic floor in Istanbul. He is an ethnographer, an explorer of the memory of mankind, and a seeker of archetypes.

December 2 to January 14, 2011 - 20thAnnual Contemporary Finnish American Artist Series:  Dina Kantor: Finnish and Jewish

Dina Kantor "Heli"

How does Judaism survive in a country where there are only two synagogues? In a nation of 5.3 million people, how do 1,500 Jews maintain their cultural identity? Artist Dina Kantor explores these questions in a series of photographs documenting the lives, work and religious traditions of the small Jewish community in Finland. Kantor's photographs investigate the construction of identity and community in our increasingly complex and multi-cultural world.

October 21 to November 20, 2010 --  Natsu: Path of Particles

NATSU sculpture Sparkling, complex, and organic are words that only begin to describe the bead sculptures of artist Natsu. Using small plastic beads, strung together and woven in a labor-intensive process, Natsu creates sculptures that explore the origins, structure and existence of the universe, with a view to both the scientific and the mythological. Born and educated in Japan, Natsu now lives in New York City.

September 20 to October 16, 2010 -- Wendy Brawer Green Maps of the World: Charting a Sustainable Future

 Wendy Brawer and Team One small map started a revolution in the way cities are mapped. First printed in 1992, the Green Apple Map was designed to help people experience New York City's wealth of ecological resources, community spirit and culturally significant places. Under the direction of ecological designer Wendy Brawer, this one map sparked the global Green Map movement. Today, nearly 700 locally-led Green Map projects in 55 countries have utilized its universally shared visual language of icons and adaptable framework. Maps from all over the world, including our own Keweenaw Green Map being developed by the Sustainable Keweenaw Resource Center.

Aug 12 to September 11, 2010 -- Carole Harris: Improvisations

Carole Harris City Night

Filled with saturated color and complex patterns, Carole Harris's quilts evoke the rhythms, energy and movement found in African-American music, particularly Blues and Jazz. "I try to think of my work as the visualization of the music that inspires me," notes Harris.  "Quilts are like paintings, full of color, texture and design."  Harris's visual vocabulary comes from a mixture of traditional quilt patterns, forged with some of her own imagery, impressions and experimentations.

June 10 to August 7, 2010 -- Aino Martikainen: On the Wide Waters (Väljillä Vesillä)

Aino Martikainen Artwork "On the Wide Waters" (Väljillä Vesillä), an exhibition of photographs by Finnish artist Aino Martikainen, is featured at the Finlandia University Gallery, located in the Finnish American Heritage Center, Hancock, June 10 to August 7, 2010.  With the seventh poem of the Kalevala as inspiration, Aino Martikainen has been photographing Lake Oulujärvi in the Oulu Province of central Finland since 2004. In her exhibition of photographs, Martikainen captures the poetic vistas and wide horizons of Lake Oulujärvi, and the minute details of beach foundlings left by its declining waters.

April 1 to April 20, 2010 -- Finlandia University International School of Art & Design Juried Student Exhibition

  The annual juried exhibition includes work by International School of Art & Design students studying the fine art and design disciplines of drawing, painting and illustration, ceramic and glass, fiber and fashion design, sculpture, product and interior design, and graphic design and digital media.


February 18 to March 24, 2010 -- Finlandia University International School of Art & Design   Alumni Exhibit 2010


Finlandia University's International School of Art & Design will hold its first alumni exhibit.  Over the 11 years since the inception of the BFA degree program at Finlandia University the FUISAD had graduated 87 students in five concentrations including Ceramic Design, Fiber/Fashion Design, Interdisciplinary Design, Graphic Design and Studio Arts. This exhibit will spotlight the continuing work of these alumni artists active in the arts profession.

January 11 to February 11, 2010 -- Melinda Steffy: Remnants and Residual Memories

Melinda Steffy Apothecary, 2007

Philadelphia artist Melinda Steffy's current painting/textile/objects draw from her interests in memory, mythology, alchemy, geology, family history, and music. Based on the belief that materials retain meaning from their previous uses, items like antique lace, the spice turmeric, tarnished copper, dead ladybugs, and found barrettes make their way into rhythmic visual compositions that consider questions of memory, the loss of memory, and the construction of systems that sustain memory.

December 3, 2009, to January 3, 2010 -- Series:  Bruce Niemi  Heavy Metal/Graceful Forms

Bruce Niemi

As a twelve year old, Bruce Niemi was introduced to welding by his father, a self-taught abstract sculptor and ornamental iron artist.  Bruce was fascinated and his passion for sculpting began, leading him to study sculpture at Northern Illinois University.  Ranging from small pedestal pieces to larger wall and free-standing sculptures, Niemi's art is characterized by an uplifting positive nature. "My faith in God, the power and beauty of nature and the energy and balance of dance are the driving forces behind my art," notes Niemi. "It would be safe to say if you studied my art you would know my heart."  Niemi has 28 large scale public sculptures located across the United States and his work is represented in 20 corporate collections.  He has exhibited in numerous solo, group and juried exhibitions.

October 26 to November 27, 2009 -- Gerard Brown: Seeing and Reading

Gerard Brown Artwork Gerard Brown makes drawings that sit at the intersection of seeing and reading. His drawings invite viewers to examine the idea that pictures can be read. The notion of the image as a form of text was central to much of the art making and theory of the late 20th century. By employing various writing systems (Braille and others) as building blocks of pictures, Brown invites the viewer to be a reader and the reader to be a viewer in hopes that something might be gained in the space between these parts of our selves. "A photograph of a person or a city is one form of description, and a poem about that person or place is another," he observes, "but what happens when these two perfectly adequate forms of description are turned on one another?"

September 17 to October 20, 2009 --  Terri Saulin: Lines of Flight

Terri Saulin

Flipping, deleting, expanding, speeding up, slowing down, layering and distilling visual material into art pieces, Terri Saulin creates artwork organic in nature and layered with meaning. Her interest in biology, botany, classical music, geology, and gastronomy are evident in every nook and crevice of her densely textured ceramic pieces. Although her process begins in sculpture, it develops into drawing (a backward play on the traditional preliminary sketch to final sculpture). Drawings and plaster prints, supplemented by their ceramic references will be exhibited in Lines of Flight.

July 23 to September 11, 2009  --  Derek Guthrie

Derek Guthrie

British artist, art critic and co-founder of the influential art magazine New Art Examiner, Derek Guthrie will premiere his artwork in the United States at Finlandia University. Known for decades in Chicago for his work in art criticism, Guthrie is credited with having introduced a new set of writers that would become prominent in their field. Concentrating on artists, exhibitions, and critical issues in Chicago and the Midwest, the New Art Examiner (published 1973-2002) provided an alternative to such magazines as Art News, Art in America, and Artforum. Influenced by nature and his love of oriental art, Guthrie will exhibit a retrospective of his own work and will visit Finlandia to work with students and present a public lecture.

May 28 to July 17, 2009 -- John Hubbard: Recent Works

John Hubbard Drawing inspiration from the well-known Canadian painters, The Group of Seven, and the California Impressionists John Hubbard’s landscape paintings express the rugged beauty and luminous light of the Northern landscape.  Closely cropped water patterns, treetops viewed from below and the blue green light of the deep forest fill Hubbard’s canvases in this series of work created during a recent sabbatical.  Working alla prima, from the Italian “at once”, Hubbard created each painting in one sitting. The productive and creative momentum created by this intensive research continues to influence his painting.  A professor in the School of Art and Design at Northern University for nearly 40 years, Hubbard teaches drawing, painting and printmaking.

June 3 to September 11, 2008 -- Jari Arffman: Counterparts

  Counterparts is an exhibit of black and white photography by Finnish photographer Jari Arffman. Following its premiere at the Kajaani Art Museum, Finland, the exhibit visits the Finlandia University Gallery and the Nordic Heritage Museum, Seattle. Counterparts is a compilation of three periods of Arffman's work. The photos combine multiple real cities into the imaginary cities of St. Pragburg. Utopia, and St. Utopia. Arffman writes that the photos give prominence to a way of being that is not dependent solely on our position on the globe.

April 22 to May 22, 2008 -- FUISAD 2008 Diploma Works Exhibition

  Presented annually, the Diploma Works exhibit features the work of International School of Art and Design graduating BFA students. The exhibit pieces represent each graduating student's final body of work and take the form of intensive research projects, series of individual artworks, or design prototypes.  This year's exhibition featured 23 BFA graduating seniors and was held in two locations, the Finlandia University Gallery and the Portage Campus.

March 28 to April 15, 2008 -- FUISAD Juried Student Exhibition

  The annual juried exhibition includes work by International School of Art & Design students studying the fine art and design disciplines of drawing, painting and illustration, ceramic and glass, fiber and fashion design, sculpture, product and interior design, and graphic design and digital media.  This exhibit had over 175 entries and we exhibited 77 pieces from 38 students.

February 7 to March 19, 2008 -- Jim Denomie: Recent Work

  Minnesota artist Jim Denomie returns to Finlandia University by popular demand after working with students in the Art and Design program in 2004. Born on the Lac Courte Orielles reservation in Northern Wisconsin, Denomie's work deals with critical issues pertaining to the status of contemporary Native American people, including cultural heritage and evolving Native identities. "As an Ojibwe artist," Denomie writes, "I use canvas to tell stories in a conceptually abstract way, combining symbolism, metaphor, and popular imagery to speak about the realities of today's world."

December 20 to January 31, 2008 -- Celebration of the Upper Peninsula as Home: A Traveling Art Exhibition 2007-2008


Organized by the Upper Peninsula Environmental Coalition, eleven Upper Peninsula artists pay tribute to the beauty of the land and concern for its protection.  This exhibit will travel to venues throughout the Upper Peninsula and Wisconsin.  Artists exhibiting include Ingrid Cline Blixt, Joyce Koskenmaki, Ron Lukey, John Lundeen, Jan Manniko, Rex Marsh, Eric Munch, Vicki Allison Phillips, Christine Saari, Peg Sandin, and Patrick St. Germain

November 15 to December 13, 2007 -- 17th Annual Contemporary Finnish American Artist Series: John Lundeen

 John Lundeen Artwork

Finnish-American artist John Lundeen works from his studio on the shores of Lake Superior.  Images of the lake act as a backdrop for Lundeen's metaphorical paintings where boats, fruit, and mathematical formulas all float above the surface of the water in a playful expression of the wonders of nature and the human mind.

October 11 to November 8, 2007 -- 2006 International Sumi-E Painting Contest and Exhibition

  As Director of The Federation of American-Asian Culture and Art, International School of Art And Design Professor Yueh-mei Cheng traveled to Japan and Taiwan last spring to participate in the Jury committee for the 2006 International Asian Sumi-E Painting Contest and Exhibition. This exhibit has been exhibited at the Kyoto Municipal Museum of Art in Japan, the Zen Mountain Art Institute in Taichung, Taiwan, and the Osaka Museum of Art in Osaka, Japan. Part of the award-winning artwork will travel to Finlandia's campus for its premiere in the United States.

September 13 to October 4, 2007 -- Finlandia University International School of Art and Design Faculty Exhibit

  An exhibition featuring the new works of Finlandia University Art and Design faculty Niki Belkowski, Jon Brookhouse, Yueh-mei Cheng, Carrie Flaspohler, Phyllis Fredendall, Rick Loduha and Denise Vandeville

July 26 to September 7, 2007 -- Cherie Sampson: In/Of Nature

  Environmental, performance and video artist Cherie Sampson often works in the natural environment making site-specific works with wood and other local materials in wild, public and rural locations. Her work within the landscape comes from a desire to connect with the raw forces of nature and its cycles of generation, decay and renewal. Representing all aspects of an environment from sensory and elemental to historical, Sampson's art strives to communicate a primal link between human life, culture and nature.

June 7 to July 21, 2007 -- Kotiväki: Daniel and Tiffany Besonen

   The sculptural installation Kotiväki (the Finnish word for family) is the dialogue of a modern Finnish-American mother and father as they build family, identity, and home through the lenses of tradition and modern reality.  Drawn to the visceral and content-rich qualities of sewing pattern paper, beeswax, basswood logs, copper wire, vintage wooden ironing boards and other domestic found materials, Tiffany Besonen constructs multiple pear-shaped forms into mixed-media narratives about identity, biology and motherhood. With modern tools and his great-great grandfather Elias Pakkala's century-old tools, Daniel Besonen's log structures incorporate stone with traditional Finnish log techniques, honoring his Finnish heritage while examining contemporary architectural forms. Both Daniel and Tiffany Besonen use traditional materials in new ways, similar to how their ancestors "made do" with what was available to them.