Seppo Suomensyrjä

Lahti, Villähde (1950)

Seppo Suomensyrjä is a Formula 1 and motor sports enthusiast. He revisits his own 1950s childhood through real-size toy cars and biplane Sopwith Camel that he has built in his garden. His toys include a hybrid yellow dragon made from a real Harley, and a Sputnik moped that can be seen speeding against the night-sky. Also, Suomensyrjä designs new space-age models, Jaguars in particular; he finds the mythology connected to this black beast of the jungle especially fascinating.

Seppo Suomensyrjä has built a Wild West saloon in his own house; it is a warm collection of hilarious objects, a museum of memories. The artist’s surreal paintings provide the settings for the gunfights his “cowboy persona” Finn-Side Kid arranges.

To counterbalance the charm of the motorised world, Suomensyrjä has sculpted concrete sprites, elves, Kalevala’s Väinämöinen and animals in his back garden.

Text Minna Haveri. Photos: Juho Haavisto. Translation: Kirsti Nurmela-Knox.