- About Ateneum
The breathtaking views over Lake Pielisjärvi from atop the hills of Koli came to represent the national landscape in the 1890s. Järnefelt’s paintings of Koli played a key role in this development. Järnefelt visited Koli for the first time in August 1892 together with his friend Juhani Aho and Aho’s wife Venny Soldan-Brofeldt. Although their destination at the time was Karelia on the other side of the border with Russia, Järnefelt’s interest in Karelia eventually waned, unlike his fascination with the magnificent landscapes in Koli. He returned often to admire the scenery in different seasons, particularly in autumn, and he continued to paint the views in different directions almost until his death. His most famous work from Koli is Autumn Landscape of Lake Pielisjärvi, which was regarded as a national symbol during the years of oppression around the turn of the century.