Art and ovens in Pyhäniemi manor



Pyhäniemi manor in Hollola, at 15 minutes from Lahti by car, is the place to stop if you are interested in decorative ceramic stoves or in contemporary Finnish art. Till the 12th of August a varied sample of quality art is on display in the manor.


Although there must have been a farm for centuries, the manor only dates back to 1780. The manor’s heyday was in the late 1800s, with 10 000 hectares of land and up to 250 dairy cows. Swiss-style cheese was produced for export to Russia. Pyhäniemi manor was the first to do machine ploughing in Finland in 1898 using a Fowler steam engine.

The manor’s agricultural and industrial buildings have vanished almost without trace. The main house is still standing along with a few adjoining buildings. The current appearance of the main building dates from 1907. The tree-lined drive and remnants of the English-style park give an idea of the manor’s foregone wealth.


The manor has an eventful history. In the 1930s it was nicknamed Hollywood in Hollola because it served as the location for many films of the production company Suomen Filmiteollisuus.

During the Winter War from November 1939 to March 1940, one of the ice airfields of the Finnish Air Force was in Pyhäniemi. Runways were cleared on the frozen lake Vesijärvi while accommodation and maintenance were organized in the manor. Pyhäniemi was the base for operations by fighter planes and a site for training pilots to handle the modern aircraft received as assistance from Sweden and other countries.


The glorious blue art nouveau stove is decorated with a peacock motif. (More ovens at the bottom.)





Pyhäniemi manor has served as the venue for art exhibitions since the 1980s. The summer exhibition of 2018 stays open till the 12th of August. It consists of a retrospective of the Bonk Business Inc., an art project of the 1990s by Alvar Gullichsen, and of works by 22 contemporary Finnish artists, including paintings, sculptures, textiles, mobile works, videos and installations.

Anchovy oil-powered Bonk machines, devoid of any operational features, are displayed in the main building.



Porcelain rabbit by Matias Liimatainen.


Motorized sculptures by Antti Immonen.


Colourful earthenware sculptures by Johanna Rytkölä.


Satu-Minna Suorajärvi uses 3D modeling to create sculptures in plastic.


In the early 1900s Pyhäniemi manor was handed over to a new owner – the Dutch consul in Finland – to cover a gambling debt incurred in Monte Carlo. In 2018 the manor has been on sale due to a mortgage claim but it is hoped the new owner will consider continuing art exhibitions.

There is just a modest café in the manor, but plenty of services are to be found in the municipality of Hollola where you can also check out the medieval church, one of the handsomest in Finland.

A classic round Scandinavian stove does not take much space.