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Pekka Jylhä - Learning to Fly

Sculptor Pekka Jylhä – At its best, a sculpture is a poem within a space

You have the freedom to be yourself, your true self, here and now, and nothing can stand in your way. - Richard Bach

Jonathan Livingston Seagull, a story by author Richard Bach, came to the mind of Sculptor and Artist Professor Pekka Jylhä when he saw the Wintergarden of Hotel St. George for the first time. “It was beautiful and tall like a cathedral, light literally flies into it. It seemed to need a magnificent bird to fill the space and give wings to the mind.”

These were the thoughts that inspired Learning to Fly, the work of art that will soon be hung in the light of Hotel St. George’s glass-roofed Wintergarden.

 Pekka Jylhä draws by hand. To him, that is the best way to structure his thoughts and begin a new sculpture. He drew the first version of the bird in his notebook in 2015.

 Drawing is the most labour-intensive stage of the process. The drawings are transformed into one miniature after another. Each fine-tuned aspect means another miniature, but at every stage, the work of art gets closer to completion.

 The finished sculpture is made of approximately one hundred parts. It has been assembled in small segments, little by little and with utmost care. Once the pieces have been welded together, they can no longer be removed. The sculpture’s form follows that of the miniature. It’s like a puzzle coming together, one piece at a time.

 When Pekka Jylhä began his work of art, it weighed a thousand kilos. Now that it’s finished, the weight is down to 290 kilos. Learning to Fly is ready to spread its wings.