Vilho Lampi, Self-Portrait, 1932
Vilho Henrik Lampi (1898-1933) was born in Oulu, Finland, from where he moved with his family to Liminka a decade later. In 1921, Lampi went to Helsinki to study at the Drawing School of the Finnish Art Association. He soon was granted scholarships and won first prizes in competitions.
After his art studies, in 1925, Lampi returned to the North to his home farm. In Liminka, Vilho painted still lifes, portraits and landscapes of familiar objects, models and landscapes from his home area. By the turn of the decade, he took part in domestic and international joint exhibitions. He also joined the Finnish Artists' Association.
Lampi held the only solo exhibition during his lifetime in Oulu in 1931. Almost half of the works were sold. The same year, Lampi travelled to Paris for two months, financing his trip with a grant. In 1933, Lampi took part in both domestic and international exhibitions receiving recognition in the form of prizes and scholarships. His future looked bright. But, on March 17th, 1936, he threw himself into the River Oulujoki and drowned. His body was found later that spring.
Today, The Vilho Lampi Society is active in Liminka, researching and promoting Lampi's legacy, and maintaining a museum dedicated to Lampi. In the course of past decades Vilho Lampi has become a significant part of Finnish art history.
Vilho Lampi, Self-Portrait, 1934