September Artist of the Month: Asko Niemelä-Koura

1.9.2023 - 30.9.2023

In my paintings, color is more than just the color itself. Colors create content for my paintings and build a “visible and invisible” structure in them.

The starting point of my painting is an observation that has inspired and aroused interest in painting the phenomenon. I usually paint and work outdoors in the landscape, so my paintings can be said to be “landscape paintings”.

It is also very important to me whether the interaction of the colors in painting works with each other and how the relationships of the colors work in the painting, what does the colors look like in the entire painting.

You can say about my paintings that; “the whole is more than the sum of the parts”. I have also often described my work with the phrase; “When you see a thousand trees, you see one forest”.

My painting is characterized by a very metaphysical sense of space; “I paint in the landscape, here and now”.

The works on display have been painted in Kauklahti and Italy.

The oil painting which is displayed on Artist of the Month wall was painted during autumn 2022 near Kauklahti station. I became interested in painting when I was walking a dog named Lempi, who was sniffing the plants on the edge of the parking lot. The plants had a very autumnal color. I got excited about the autumn colors and their relationship with the environment. I later returned to the same place with my painting tools and let the colors sing on the canvas.

In the first week of July 2023, I was hiking in Italy, in the mountains around Breuil-Cervinia. The place is located at the bottom of a valley near the Swiss border and is surrounded by mountains and mountain scenery. I went up to a height of 3,500 meters on cable lifts, and I had oil pastels with me. I painted the two pastel paintings that are now displayed on the Artist of the Month wall.

Artwork: Asko Niemelä-Koura, Breuil-Cervinia, Testa Grigia, Italy, 2023, oil pastel on paper


Asko Niemelä-Koura is a painter born in Kuusamo in 1958 who lives and works in Espoo. He graduated from Vapaa taidekoulu in 1990. Niemelä-Koura has held several solo exhibitions and participated in group exhibitions. Asko Niemelä-Koura’s works are in public and private collections in Finland and abroad.