Sámi shawl thread, wood
Year of acquisition: 2017
Shawl fringe threads of the traditional Sámi dress, gákti, have been tied to rowan branches hung from the ceiling. The artist Outi Pieski describes the work as a three-dimensional drawing of the Lapland fells. The threads are translucent, for the scenery is so familiar to the artist that she knows exactly what lies behind each hill. Many of Pieski’s installations feature scarf fringes tied to branches using a traditional Sámi handicraft technique (duodji). The ritualistic process of tying the threads is a key part of the work.
Pieski is a Sámi artist whose work fuses northern landscapes and Sámi culture. Her work portrays the intimate bond between the land and the people, which is an integral part of Sámi culture. Pieski draws inspiration from Sámi visual heritage, while also addressing issues related to the status and rights of Finland’s indigenous minority, using art where political avenues are blocked.
1973, Finland. Lives in Utsjoki and Numminen.
Photo: Finnish National Gallery / Pirje Mykkänen