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The Living Environment

Jun 19, 2013 11:30 AM

The exhibition The Living Environment makes Sámi cultural environments visible. It introduces the audience with Sámi cultural landscapes through archaeology, built heritage and landscape-related oral knowledge. The exhibition is realized through the Ealli biras – The Living Environment project, which is funded by the European Regional Development Fund ERDF and gets its national funding from the Regional Council of Lapland.

The Living Environment

A storage hut in "Kaapin Jouni" (Gábe-Jovnna, Jouni Aikio) farm in Lemmenjoki.

The natural environment in the wide Sápmi region varies greatly, from the bare northernmost fells to the forests and string fens of Central Lapland. The various areas have created different forms of land use, livelihood, and living. With time, these variations that were dependent on the natural conditions also formed borders between languages and cultures. Ealli biras is a tale of the versatile landscapes and cultural environments of the Finnish Sápmi region.

Cultural environment is an umbrella term for the various forms of culture born out of the interaction between humans and the natural environment and the phases it has gone through during the ages. The philosophy in each culture affects which aspects are considered culture and which nature. The northern landscape may seem like a desolate natural view because it may not have any visible signs of human activity. However, the Sápmi region is part of the cultural landscape of the Sámi people, and it has been created through interaction between humans and nature, over the course of many generations.

The archaeological findings of the past few years have given us new information on the phases of habitation in the Sápmi region. The exhibition presents a wide range of archaeological items. Some 20 years ago, the remainders of huts and houses in the winter village in Nukkumajoki, Inari, were studied through archaeological excavations. Some of the items found in these excavations are among the findings presented for the first time in the Sápmi region.

Many kinds of traditional information are related to the landscape, and they are transferred from generation to generation through doing things together, or as stories. A story hut has been built for the Ealli biras exhibition, where visitors can listen to stories related to places around the Sápmi region. The soundscape playing in the background of the exhibition is created by the musician Wimme Saari.

The Ealli biras – the living environment exhibition is part of a project of the same name by the Siida Sámi Museum (1.1.2011–30.9.2013). The project publishes a Sámi cultural environment programme, to which the exhibition is directly related. The project is funded internationally by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and nationally by the Regional Council of Lapland.

The Ealli biras exhibition is open from 15 June 2013 to 25 May 2014. Siida is open from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. every day during the summer period (1.6.-19.9), and Tuesday to Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. during the winter period (20.9.-31.5) (closed on Mondays).

For more information, contact:
Curator Arja Jomppanen, arja.jomppanen(at)samimuseum.fi, +358 40 579 3313
Project coordinator Päivi Magga, paivi.magga(at)samimuseum.fi,+358 40 180 1501

Ealli biras logoraitoweb

Sámi museum, Siida, Inarintie 46, FI-99870 Inari, tel. +358 (0)400 898 212, siida@samimuseum.fi, www.siida.fi

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