Residence at Villa Sarkia۩


Villa Sarkia residences are organized by the Nuori Voima Liitto, which is, roughly translated the union of young force...difficult to be translated!

It is actually the union of young writers which was founded in 1921 in Finland, during the years of strong soviet influence.

Their main purpose and action was to give advice to young artists, principally, writers, poets.

Nowadays, NVL, publishes five times a year their own magazine, with cultural reviews , articles and essays of writers, poets, artists.

Twice a year they also issue the known publication Kritikki.

One of the most important happenings organised by NVL is the poetry reading festival, Runokuu Festivaali (moon of poetry).

And finally, as per said, NVL program include residence studios for writers, poets, translators and artists to the Villa Sarkia house..

The house was named after the late Finnish poet Kaarlo Sarkia, who died in Sysmä. The poet had a complicated, tormented and , nevertheless, a very prolific life.

His poems are widely known and read.

Laia Riera Sanjaume

Extract image of the Corona Radiata illustrated book project at Villa Sarkia Art Residency

Illustration "Drawing for them"

Inks, oil pastels, acrylic paint.

"Homesickness, in English, heimweh in German, mal du pays in French, ….Enyorar in Catalan, my mother tongue…Saudade in Portuguese…are just few of the examples to start describing this peculiar journey that brought me to apply for the Sarkia residence.

And that today I can say I quite “achieved” it. At least, the starting point is a very good achievement, or so I want to believe.

Proud of living in a foreign land, being able to submit to a residence to write, paint and develop my first graphic , sort of, novel.

Proud as well of being again an immigrant, this time, further up in the North, this time deeper than any of the previous times. This time for love, for art, for myself, for the sake of existing.

This time FINLAND. SUOMI. To the day, Finland is still full of shadows, nuances, mysteries to be unfold.


Obviously to all, it is of quite negative connotation the homesickness. At the same time, it can lead to some extend to surprising positive situations.

In my case, had been always an ambivalent feeling, sensation, perception and finally, a reaction.

After the reaction, as some psychologists might say,  it comes a response.


As per said,  the iceberg tip or , let’s say, the landmark  of this year and four months in Finland…had been Villa Sarkia residence.

This month of intensive creativity and reclusion in Sysmä allowed some ghosts to reappear and some to fade away from my sketches and writings.

Through books of  Shamanism in Lapland, Finland old traditions and customs, Kalevala epic English version and my solitude and sub-exile (within an exile) I exited with a clearer project in my hands.

With the perspective that only time provides us, and prove us, my experience at Villa Sarkia residence stands for multiple achievements in a common ground. " <<<

Fragment of my report of the residency.

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