Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Havis Amanda

Havis Amanda is a nude female statue in Helsinki, Finland. It was sculpted by Ville Vallgren (1855-1940) in 1906 in Paris, but was not erected at its present location at the Market Square in Kaartinkaupunki until 1908.

She is a mermaid who stands on seaweed as she rises from the water, with four fish spouting water at her feet and surrounded by four sea lions She is depicted leaning backwards as if to say goodbye to her element.

What's interesting about this statute is that she will be capped tomorrow. Students of the local universities will put a cap on the statue on an elaborate ceremony to start off the May Day celebrations. After which it is time to start drinking and get wasted.

Read more on May Day (Vappu) celebrations in Finland

Photo of the capping ceremony here!

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