Finnish artist Eino Romppanen is marking his 50th year of work as a stone sculptor with an exhibit at the Nordic Heritage Museum. The exhibit is titled Eino – 50 Years of Making Sculptures, running now through Dec. 7. Romppanen describes his work as “working into stone, not in stone,” and is world-renowned for his work.
From the Nordic Heritage Museum:
Eino Romppanen, known to the art world simply as Eino, was born in Finland and has lived and worked in the United States since 1962. Over these years, Eino has worked in 22 countries and his commissioned works can be found in all five Nordic countries, including the Stockholm Stadium, once host to the Olympic Games. Throughout his 50 years as an artist, Eino has explored various forms of expression, ranging from bronze and marble portraits to abstract monoliths to solar-powered sculpture that silently rotates.
Focusing primarily on Eino’s stone sculptures, the exhibition at the Nordic Heritage Museum will provide a window into the development of Eino’s formal and thematic repertoire, his preoccupation with the relationship between nature and culture, human body and landscape, as well as his exploration of sculptural form.
As a child in Finland, Eino loved to draw, carve wood, and mold clay. He developed a fascination for stone as a medium while serving in Finland’s equivalent of the Army Corps of Engineers. Shortly after, Eino started his own business, and in 1962 he moved to the United States. Traveling cross-country by car, Eino recalls how he was awed by the wide expanses of the land. He arrived in Los Angeles in November 1962 to study at Santa Monica City College, and after a revelation, changed majors and began sculpting in marble. Within seven years, he had already distinguished himself a renowned sculptor, with commissioned work in the United States and the Nordic countries.
Now living in Pahrump, Nevada, Eino says, “You don’t go where the artists already are — you go where there are no artists.” His life as a stone sculptor has taken him all around the world where his sculptures are found in private collections and public spaces from schools to sports arenas.