Havis Amanda statue by Market Square, Helsinki
Foto: Monika Poitschke-Bister
Havis Amanda is one of Vallgren's Parisian Art Nouveau works. It is cast in bronze and the fountain it resides in is made of granite. She is a mermaid who stands on seaweed as she rises from the water, with four fish spouting water at her feet and surrounded by four sea lions. She is depicted leaning backwards as if to say goodbye to her element. Vallgren's intention was to symbolize the rebirth of Helsinki. The height of the statue is 194 centimetres and with the pedestal it stands 5 metres tall. According to Vallgren's letters the model for the statue was a then 19-year-old Parisian lady, Marcelle Delquini.
Every year on Vappu, Manta serves as a centrepiece for the celebrations. Students of the local universities put a cap on the statue on an elaborate ceremony. For many it is a "must see" event.
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