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Finnish Man Makes Art on Frozen Lake a Yearly Tradition


A drawing of a fox is seen on the frozen Pitkajarvi lake north of Helsinki, Finland, Saturday, Dec. 4, 2021. An architect-designer in southern Finland has returned to a frozen lake with a snow shovel to draw a large animal on the ice for the sixth year in a row. (Pasi Widgren vi
Finnish Man Makes Art on Frozen Lake a Yearly Tradition
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For the sixth year in a row, a building designer in Finland has created a very large work of art on a frozen lake.

On Lake Pitkajarvi, north of Helsinki, Pasi Widgren made an image of a fox that measures 90 meters from head to tail. He said he hopes the artwork will “make people happy” and move them to go for a walk in what he called, “beautiful nature.”

The 40-year-old Widgren lives near the city of Lahti, about a 90 minute drive northeast of the lake.

He uses a shovel to create the artworks on ice. They melt from sight over time or disappear under snow. Widgren made his first ice picture in the winter of 2016.

The artist recently told The Associated Press that the idea to make such pieces came to him suddenly.

“I realized I may have a special ability of coordination to do this,” Widgren said.

He visited Lake Pitkajarvi on December 4. He tested the thickness of the ice as soon as he arrived to make sure it was strong enough to walk and work on. At 10-15 centimeters thick, it was.

After four hours of work, Widgren was done.

He then walked up a hillside about 150 meters above the lake to get a good look at his large artwork. He took some pictures and video to mark the effort.

A drawing of a fox is seen on the frozen Pitkajarvi lake north of Helsinki, Finland, Saturday, Dec. 4, 2021. (Pasi Widgren via AP)
A drawing of a fox is seen on the frozen Pitkajarvi lake north of Helsinki, Finland, Saturday, Dec. 4, 2021. (Pasi Widgren via AP)

Several days later the picture was harder to see because it has snowed a little, Widgren said.

But its lack of permanence is not a problem for its creator.

“It’s very important to me also that making this kind of art doesn’t leave any marks on nature,” Widgren said.

I’m John Russell.

Jan M. Olsen reported on this story for the Associated Press. John Russell adapted it for Learning English. Caty Weaver was the editor.

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Words in This Story

shovel – n. a tool with a long handle that is used for lifting and throwing dirt, sand, snow, etc.

coordination – n. the process of causing things to be the same or to go together well

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