Havis Amanda to return to Market Square on June 26

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Havis Amanda to return to Market Square on June 26

The restoration of Havis Amanda is now complete, and the sculpture will return to its familiar place Market Square on June 26, said the City of Helsinki in a press release on Monday.

The renovation of the square will continue for the summer, and the area will remain fenced off.

A temporary cover to be installed around the sculpture for periods of national celebrations will be tested at the worksite this week.

As part of the restoration process, the structure of the sculpture was reinforced, and all tears and holes were patched up by brazing.

The seams of the bronze upper basin of the fountain were also reinforced by welding. However, the century-old sculpture cannot withstand people climbing onto it.

“There are still microfractures and visible stress marks in the upper basin, the restoration of which was not possible or even sensible. As such, it is important to keep in mind that despite all the repair and reinforcement procedures, the sculpture cannot withstand climbing in the future, either,” said Public Art Conservator Polina Semenova.

The surface restoration process involved removing the layers of dirt, air pollution and calcification that had accumulated on the surface of the sculpture over a century.

The blue-green patina was also tidied up in order for the details of the sculpture to be more prominent. At the end of the process, the surface of the sculpture received a layer of protective wax.

“The restoration process was a success, and it will extend Havis Amanda’s lifespan as expected. The beloved landmark of Helsinki is now in a much better condition and will be there at the Market Square for future generations as well,” Semenova added.

Completed in 1908, the fountain and its bronze sculptures form a work of art designed by Ville Vallgren.

In addition to its artistic value, the work holds special significance in terms of cultural history and the cityscape alike.

Havis Amanda is part of the City of Helsinki’s art collection administrated by HAM Helsinki Art Museum. Technical maintenance of the work, including the water systems, is carried out by the Urban Environment Division.

During national celebrations, Havis Amanda will be protected by a cover made of strong board.

The cover consists of strong, weather-proof board and a steel frame, and it can be delivered in parts and assembled quickly.

The cover is intended to be used only for short periods when necessary, for no more than a few days per year. The cover will be used in situations involving celebrations. Finland making it to the final of the ice hockey World Championships. It is not planned to be used for May Day celebrations.

“Manta will continue to serve as a fun and excellent centrepiece for celebrations, and we always hope that Finland achieves as much success as possible in sports and culture alike. In order to keep the sculpture undamaged, we will install a new cover around the sculpture for the duration of national celebrations, as even after the restoration process, the sculpture cannot withstand climbing and swimming. The cover will also ensure that people do not injure themselves,” said Cultural Director Mari Männistö.

A trial installation of the cover will be carried out on the square this week or the next before Manta returns. Only the steel frame of the cover is used in the trial installation.

The square around Havis Amanda will remain fenced off as a worksite for the summer of 2024, even though the sculpture will return to the square after Midsummer.

The last work phases in the summer will involve finishing the surfaces and pavements.

During the renovation process, a permanent lifting spot was built for cranes used for the May Day capping of the statue and maintenance of the sculpture. The technology of the fountain and the related pipelines were also overhauled. May Day 2025 will be celebrated at Havis Amanda normally.

Source: www.dailyfinland.fi

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