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Oskars Mikans: Man rises from rubbish bin; Monument to Arvo Kustaa Parkkila, 2001. You may not use this photo for commercial purposes. © Photo: Helsinki Art Museum / Yehia Eweis

Man rises from rubbish bin / Monument to Arvo Kustaa Parkkila, 2001

Artist Oskars Mikans

Lapinlahden puistikko, Eerikinkatu, Kamppi, Helsinki

With a few friends in the 1960s, Arvo Kustaa Parkkila (1905-1978) founded Suoja-Pirtti ry, a support group for homeless alcoholics, in the district of Kamppi in Helsinki. Parkkila himself had stopped drinking and had begun to secure food, care and emergency shelter for homeless men. Parkkila and Suoja-Pirtti ry also contributed to the birth of the ‘Bat Cave’, a legendary shelter for alcoholics in Ruoholahti in Helsinki.

Suoja-Pirtti ry commissioned a statue of Parkkila from Latvian artist Oskars Mikans, and donated it to the City of Helsinki. At the unveiling of the statue on 17 December 2001, speeches were made by Prime Minister Paavo Lipponen and Ilkka-Christian Björklund, Deputy Mayor of Helsinki, who accepted the work on behalf of the City. The artist, Mikans, was also present at the unveiling.

Made of bronze, the statue is about 20% larger than life. The work of art belongs to the collection of HAM Helsinki Art Museum.

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