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Irmeli Mäkilä at Finlandia University Gallery


Vital Information

About the Exhibition

Finnish artist Irmeli Mäkil䀙s exhibit titled Unendings will be on display at the Finlandia University Gallery, located in the Finnish American Heritage Center, Hancock, from August 11 to September 8, 2016.

A closing reception at the gallery will take place on Thursday, September 8, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. with an artist talk beginning at 7:15 p.m.  The reception is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served.

In her exhibit, Unendings, Irmeli Mäkilä moves freely across art history and its image archive, and her personal visual experiences and preferences.  The inspiration for her paintings and other art works has arisen from the imagery of different cultures, its philosophy and its way of depicting reality in a non-figurative form.

Colorful and abstract, Mäkil䀙s work bundles together botanic and geometrical motifs into a multifilament and complex web, often leaving the impression of an infinite and never-ending line, created by vine- and spiral motifs. However, nothing is simple: lines, myceliums, patterns and images can merge into endless forms or suddenly disappear€¦

The title of the exhibition, Unendings, refers to ornament. In Mäkil䀙s work, ornament is a distinctive feature, often utilizing a stylized image of a plant or a decorative motif composed of a geometric pattern. Mäkilä extends her use of ornament with repetition and variation creating an arabesque design. The overall impression resulting from this approach is abstraction remains rooted in the larger entity from which it is derived.

€œIrmeli Mäkil䀙s paintings invite the viewer on multiple expeditions,€ notes Finnish critic and journalist Seppo Heiskanen. €œAt first, attention is drawn to the versatile, sometimes surprising, images. Figures, forms and fields of colour appear behind each other and persuade one to take a look into the depths of the painting, all the way behind the painted surface. Finally, her paintings welcome the viewer to explore the history of art and culture.€

€œI try to ensure that my works always have something organic, unknown and undetermined, something that is outside the frame of reference and codes of culture, something that spurs an immediate feeling, allowing the viewer’s imagination fly freely,€ says Mäkilä.

€œUnendings€ will be on display through September 8, 2016.

The Finlandia University Gallery is in the Finnish American Heritage Center, 435 Quincy Street, Hancock. Gallery hours are Monday to Friday 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

For more information on the exhibit or reception, call 906-487-7500. For more information on Irmeli Mäkilä visit

Photo Captions

Header Image: Meet the Plastic (White), 2016, acrylic on canvas, 50 x 45 cm

Photo 1:  The artist Irmeli Mäkilä

Photo 2: Meet the Plastic (Green), 2016, acrylic on canvas, 50 x 45 cm

Made Possible Because Of

Alfred Kordelinin Saatio

Arts Council of Uusimaa