And what a splendid year it will be!

31.1.2017 by

This year, we are celebrating Finland’s one hundred years of independence. We have only just reached the end of January, but there is already an unusual and extraordinary amount of events highlighting Finnish culture all over Denmark.

So what did January bring us?

The Finland100 celebrations were kicked off in Denmark in a very exciting way with the first ever visit by the Finnish National Ballet. It was a jam-packed weekend with four shows of the Snow Queen, or Snedronningen, hosted by Det Kongelige Teater. The Finnish Prime Minister Juha Sipilä, the Danish Queen Margrethe II and Prince Henrik were all in attendance on the opening night.

The ballet, based on a story by H. C. Andersen, has previously enjoyed fantastic success in Finland. It was received very well with sold-out shows at the Royal Opera House in Copenhagen as well.

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Another important event was the opening of the exhibition Alvar Aalto – Second Nature at Kunsten in Aalborg. It is only on very rare occasions that you are able to incorporate the physical museum building into an exhibition, and this is exactly what Kunsten has done. With Alvar Aalto having designed the building, you are welcomed and surrounded by Aalto’s work even before stepping into the actual exhibition. Alvar Aalto – Second Nature is a retrospective exhibition, held in collaboration with Vitra Design Museum, the Alvar Aalto Museum and the Alvar Aalto Foundation. It showcases Aalto’s architecture and design, and its dialogue with the art of his time. The exhibition is open until April 17th 2017, and is warmly recommended a visit.

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January also brought with it the opening of Japanomania at Statens Museum for Kunst, the National Gallery of Denmark. In collaboration with Ateneum in Helsinki and Nasjonalmuseet in Oslo, Japanomania explores the influence of Japonisme on Nordic art during the years 1875-1918. In the exhibition, you can find works by several famous artists, e.g. Edvard Munch, Vincent van Gogh and Claude Monet, and Finnish artists such as Albert Edelfelt and Helene Schjerfbeck. It is open until April 23rd 2017, so be sure to check it out.

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Furthermore, four artists with ties to Finland are involved with the exhibition Nordic Delights at Fotografisk CenterNordic Delights is a group exhibition that focuses on the concept of the Nordic countries and provides another perspective on Nordic identity and the notion of the “Nordic model”. The exhibition consists of works by photographers and visual artists who live and work in one of the Nordic countries, but with roots elsewhere. You can experience it until March 5th 2017.

What to keep an eye out for in the near future? 

This first week of February has a lot in store.

Firstly, Kunsthal Charlottenborg’s Spring exhibition is opening! The exhibition showcases both Danish and international artists and their work, representing various art forms, architecture and design. Key inspirations for this year’s exhibition include the use of the digital and electronics, as well as semi-religious and mysterious themes.
There are a total of six artists representing Finland, ranging from seasoned professionals to some newer voices. The artists are:

Collateral. Photo: Timo Wright

Collateral. Photo: Timo Wright

The official opening takes place February 2nd at 19-22, and the exhibition will be held until March 11th 2017. The spring exhibition has been organised annually since 1857 and it will be very interesting to see what this year’s exhibition has in store!

Secondly, Cinemateket will, in honor of Finland’s 100th year of independence, show a series of Finnish films. The films include, among others, the silent movie Anna-Liisa (1922), The Unknown Soldier (“Tuntematon sotilas”; 1955) and Aki Kaurismäki’s The Man without a Past (“Mies vailla menneisyyttä”; 2002).
The film series kicks off with a showing of The Grump (“Mielensäpahoittaja”; 2014) on February 3rd, and a reception after the viewing which director Dome Karukoski will attend.
For more information about the films and when they are showing, take a look here.

Lastly, the Finnish award-winning film The Happiest Day in the Life of Olli Mäki (Hymyilevä mies; 2016) will be shown in different cinemas across Denmark, premiering on February 2nd. The movie follows professional boxer Olli Mäki who is preparing for the biggest fight of his life, and what is to be a major event in Finnish sporting history. The run-up to the fight does not go entirely according to plan, and Mäki suddenly falls in love.
Directed by Juho Kuosmanen, the film won the prize Un Certain Regard at the 2016 Cannes film festival.

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For more information about the film (in Danish) have a look here and for information about viewing times and dates, check out the cinemas’ websites;

And this is by far only the beginning to what is to become an unbelievably interesting year. We will keep you updated on all future events both here and on our social media accounts, so do keep an eye on our Facebook page and follow us on Instagram and Twitter; @finindk. We are eagerly awaiting everything else this year has in store, and hopefully you are too!