Bear Festival Bear & I

Bear Festival ”Bear & I”
Finnish open championship competition in chainsaw sculpting
19–20 August 2016
Ilomantsi, Finland

The Bear Festival theme for summer 2016 is ”Mie ja karhu”, or ’Bear & I’.

This year the Bear festival is also the Finnish championship competition in chainsaw sculpting. Men and women compete together in two series; the six-hour sculpting competition and the 90-minute speed sculpting competition. We hope that the theme ’Bear & I’ will inspire the participating artists to try different styles and perspectives.

Sculpting wood is the most natural form of self-expression among Finnish self-taught artists, the chainsaw is the most common instrument and the bear the best-loved of all subjects. This was the foundation for the Bear Festival. It attracts self-taught sculptors to work together in Ilomantsi and to meet their enthusiastic audiences. The festival is organised by the Union for Rural Education and Culture and the municipality of Ilomantsi, and its partners include Suomen puunveistäjät ry, and various local associations and companies. The funding partners include the Kone Foundation, Keskitien Tukisäätiö and the Alfred Kordelin Foundation.

Aim: A land of a thousand bears

We would like to turn Ilomantsi into a land of a thousand bears in the coming years. It will be a sculpture park built along village roads, a display of different styles that will attract visitors from near and far. In the land of a thousand bears, the mythical realm of the forest’s king meets man’s cultural environment.

Programme in brief

19 August
6-hour competition between 12:00–18:00
Theatre in Katri Vala Kulttuurikeskus: ’Kolme iloista rosvoa’ at 18:00

20 August
90-minute Speed competition between 10:00–12:00
Award ceremony 14:00

For more information, please contact
coordinator Kaisa Kervinen,, tel. +358 45 322 8098.

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Welcome to Ilomantsi!

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