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Eric Aho: Life in Contrast – Art and the Sauna

Finlandia Foundation National Artist of the Year Eric Aho explores the role that sauna has played in his life and its impact on his painting.

An American of Finnish descent who lives in Vermont, his paintings focus on nature and forest scenes. In interviews and discussions, Eric never misses an opportunity to note his Finnish heritage as an influence on his work and inspiration.

Eric studied at the Central School of Art and Design in Vermont. He has a BFA from the Massachusetts College of Art in Boston and did postgraduate work at the Institute of Art and Design in Lahti, Finland. He has been called “One of the leading painters of landscape and the environment of his generation.”

His work is found in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the Fine Arts Museum of San Francisco, the Museum of Fine Art in Boston and the Denver Art Museum. Eric is represented in New York City by DC Moore Gallery, and he is associated with well-known galleries in Santa Fe, Jackson Hole and elsewhere.

For more about Eric:

Joining Eric in conversation are Anne Junttila, education specialist at Riverbanks Zoo and Garden in Columbia, South Carolina and a member of the FFN Young Leaders Board, and Finlandia Art Gallery Director/Curator Carrie Vander Veen.

Anne Junttila
Carrie Vander Veen


Sauna: The Power of Deep Heat by Emma O’Kelly and photographer Maija Astikainen honors the old, embraces the new, and plunges headlong into the transformative power of steam. “Smartly written and beautifully illustrated … a celebration of a cultural resurgence and a reminder of the power of connecting with nature and something larger than ourselves.” Mikkel Aaland, author of Sweat.

In a random draw at the conclusion of the program, one lucky audience member will win today’s prize. Must be present to win. NOTE: Prize shipped to U.S. address only.