The historical and artistic foundations of the Gripenberg Collection of Contemporary Fine Art
Isabella’s passion for art relies on solid roots going back to her childhood. The artistic predisposition runs in her veins through generations. Bertel Gripenberg – her grandfather- the famous poet who lived between two centuries fought a war and chanted the heroic deeds of mythological and archaic heroes, dissolute women, heroines, priests, biblical events…His fervidly burning imagination was a crucible of lyrics, stories and poems taking shape like living beings thanks to his direct indefatigable inspiration relentlessly streaming from higher realms.
Bertel Gripenberg, an overwhelming Nordic Saga in Poetry
The Poet Bertel Gripenberg grew up in St. Petersburg framed in highlights in the images above
Bertel Gripenberg was born in St. Petersburg (Russia) in September 19th 1878 during the imperial ruling of the Tsar Alexander III father of Nicholas II, Russia’s last emperor. The poet’s parents were both high ranking functionaries at the imperial court of the Tsar. In his thrilling and intense life full of adventurous and hazardous deeds one event stands out as particularly peculiar: Bertel helped the fellow author Maxim Gorky escape Russia in a horse-drawn sleigh fighting its way through the blast of the bone chilling Siberian wind. Appointed 14 times of the Literature Nobel Prize nomination Bertel Gripenberg joined the Finnish Civil war leading to Finland’s Independence. Despite risking his life several times he died peaceful in his bed year 1947 in Sävsjö (Sweden). He left an overwhelming legacy consisting of vibrant poems all of them composed in Swedish language.
Isabella certainly seemed to have inherited many the creative traits not only from Bertel but also from her father (Bertel’s son) Erwin Sebastian Gripenberg who started in post 2nd world war Sweden, the cultural Magazine “På Väg” (On the way), based on high ideals for humanity with pedagogic and spiritual guidelines inspired to the “Science of Spirit” principles. He and his wife Isa Margareta Von Troil Gripenberg were among the founders of Steiner school in Stockholm. The outstanding Finnish writer Anu Seppälä‘s ” Isa Gripenberg : aatelisnaisen tarina ” (The Story of a Noble Woman) – published in 1995 by Otava – portrays vividly her biography.
Alexandra Gripenberg: founder of women’s right organization in Finland
By Karl Emil Ståhlberg – This image is available from the United States Library of Congress‘s Prints and Photographs division under the digital ID cph.3c34017. This tag does not indicate the copyright status of the attached work. A normal copyright tag is still required. See Commons:Licensing for more information., Public Domain, Link
Bertel Gripenberg’s aunt Alexandra Gripenberg (1857-1913), was a pioneer and founder of the Finnish women’s right movement: the Suomen Naisyhdistys (Finnish Women’s Association), in Helsinki in 1884. She was born August 30th 1857 in Kurkijoki (Kronoborg) county in the South-West region of Finland. Elected conservator senator in the Parliament of Finland in 1906 with other 9 women. She died December 24th 1913 in Helsinki, after a life rich of political and cultural achievements.
Sebastian Gripenberg a milestone in Finnish Architecture
The Finnish Literature Society building in Helsinki designed by Sebastian Gripenberg in the photo above
The Archibishop’s residence in Turku (Åbo): architect Sebastian Gripenberg
Bertel Gripenberg’s elder brother Sebastian Gripenberg (1850-1925) devoted his genius to Architecture instead of Poetry. Among of his most renown constructions he designed we can recall to our memory the Finnish Literature Society. built in 1888 in Helsinki, framed in the image above. Sebastian Gripenberg was born on Mars 3rd in Kronoborg in the eastern region of Finland named Karelia bordering Russia. His academic background was rooted in studies performed under the supervision of Frans Anatolius Sjöström in Helsinki and Carl von Hasenauen in Vienna. He designed several buildings during the shift of the two centuries not only in Helsinki but also in Turku, Tampere and Ekenäs: all in all the resourceful Architect planned and delivered over sixty architectural projects all over Finland.