About me

My career as an artist and artisan started officially when I established Baltasar in 1981 in Southern Helsinki. At that time, I had started to wonder how glass and mirrors could be used in interior decoration. They had not been used for that purpose in Finland, yet. Neither was there any training available for making interior decoration glassworks. With the new idea in mind, I began to explore different types of glass and methods of working with them. Besides learning the traditional stained glass working methods, I developed my own innovative approaches and methods. Gradually, I started to produce glass artworks for windows and doors. The works that I made from various pieces of colored mirrors – which I called "mirror paintings" – received particular attention.

Soon, I received my first orders of glass works to public buildings. My glass and mirror works can be seen in, for example, Hotel Kämp, Government Banquet Hall and in the headquarters of the Finnish Broadcasting Corporation in Helsinki. Hervanta church and Hotel Ilves in Tampere also have my works. I have also made stained glass and sandblasted glass art for numerous private homes. Moreover, I also began to design glass tables and lamps for Baltasar. The firm focused entirely on glass designs and works. For years, it was the only Finnish company in this field.

I took up painting gradually after the glassworks and business had already become established. I painted abstract pictures whenever I found some time for it from my main activities. However, I showed some of my paintings in the store. Once people wanted to buy them I became more and more interested in painting. The challenge of balancing my artistic and business careers finally led to a lifestyle change in 2015 when I accidentally found a great space for a studio in the middle of the most beautiful village in Finland – Fiskars. I decided to give up my store premises in Helsinki and move into Fiskars which is famous for its strong craftsman and artist community.

Tuire Hämäläinen

This post is also available in: Finnish