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Maiju Tirri, a contemporary artist from Finland, lives and works currently in Marbella, Spain. She paints abstractions of experiences she absorbs and collects from nature. The principal theme in her art is impressions of scenes from walks and journeys. However, her paintings are not just pictures but stories.

The wildness, mercilessness and, on the other hand, harmony of nature meet human senses in Tirri's works. The difficult relationship between man and nature are reflected in the large, rough, but at the same time sensual paintings. When immersed in the painting, the viewer can wander about both on the surface and beneath it and perhaps stumble on surprises along the way. You may feel the temptation to see beyond the rich layers of sparkling colour and structure and to look both to the past and to the future.

Natural light and the northern seasons of the year have a profound influence on the artist and her work. As much as these transform the environment, they also transform her and her feelings.

"I sense very strongly the presence of nature and the various surfaces of elements in the scenery.
The constant circling movement and the flow in nature will be processed and placed in the inner flow and intellectual growth of the individual. Both energy and tranquility are emerging from original feelings and the result at its best is harmony and joy.

I wish to open up spaces and feelings that are relevant to myself,  such as meeting the enthusiastic and playful child inside me.

The nature around us is at our mercy and, at the moment, is very fragile. It is our human obligation to take care and nurture it in the best possible way.

The few moments of light, some times even sun, give me hope during the long, cold and dark winter period in Finland

There are tensions between stillness and movement, solidity and lightness, colour and structure operating in my paintings.

The aim is to reach and combine a moment's standstill as well as the continuing change in life and to convey that experience on canvas.

Rocks and stones – these stable, everlasting elements – and the constantly changing, living and vigorous force of the sea are important inducible ingredients for my thinking and painting.

Change and stability and the interaction of these intrigue me as a painter because they are also elements of the multilayered human life. They are ingredients of our reality.

I am inspired by the mystery of our world and the philosophy of life. My purpose is to reach you by inspiring you to reflect upon your relationship with nature, the surrounding world, and yourself."


Nature and culture, chaos and cosmos, flow and stillness…

In front of Maiju Tirri's colourful paintings, wild thoughts and strong emotions easily capture the mind. The spectator feels calm, meditative, and mentally moved at the same time.

Tirri's works challenge your consciousness. Language finishes, associations and connotations go wild. The spectator feels this very moment and eternity simultaneously. The mystical rhythm and details of nature stream into mind. The four elements – Earth, Water, Air, and Fire – find their metaphoric expressions in the human imagination. It seems Tirri's works tell many stories and are open to various interpretations.

Dialogues between the Finnish artist and the powerful forces of the nature and between the urban culture and the wilderness of the northern landscape have left their multi-interpretive signs and messages on the canvas.

The impressions are vibrant and significant – as if reminding us of the importance of Mother Earth and the deceptive illu-sion of the human senses. Echoes of expressionism and the early 20th century avant-garde pop into mind – at the same time the paintings' clear, minimalist forms and their gentle curves and layers make oneself feel peace and harmony. 

Change, stream, and flow are the basic feelings one can sense in front of these works. Microcosm and macrocosm, intellect and instinct, beauty and the sublime... Tirri's works exist both on the level of concrete canvas and on the level of mysteries, paradoxes, and oxymorons.

I Ching, Book of Changes, is one of the oldest and most remarkable Chinese classics. In ancient Greece, on the other hand, ta panta rhei – "everything flows" – was the insight of pre-Socratic thinker Heraclitus of Ephesus (c. 535 – c. 475 BCE). This man with great creative spirit is the philosopher of fire, logos, and eternal change.

We can think that the only stable, permanent reality is the reality of change. Life and death, birth and rebirth – everything flows and everything changes in nature as well as in human society and culture. It is not possible to step twice into the same river. All things and objects are in motion and nothing remains still.

Dr. Sam Inkinen
Media Scholar, Writer, Curator