St Olaf´s Church

Address: Kallialan kirkkotie 50, 38210 Sastamala, Finland

Artwork that Ascended from the Ash

The history of St Olaf's Church in Tyrvää is a journey back in time to the history of Finnish architecture. Built in the early 16th Century, the Church of Kalliala village rose by Lake Rautavesi on a site that has been inhabited for thousands of years. In the 17th Century, benches and a pulpit came to the church, and in the 18th century, galleries were enlarged, with Andreas Löfmark's paintings of the apostles and the "Via Crucis" series on the railing panels.
In the mid-19th Century, the church was deserted when a new church was completed on the Vammaskoski shore near city centre, Vammala. In the 1960s the church was slightly renovated, but the interior was preserved in its 18th Century appearance. In August 1997, the completion of the renovation of the church's shingle roof was celebrated.

Three weeks later, on 21st September 1997, the church was destroyed by arson.
During the next twelve years, the church was completely rebuilt with the help of a collective effort and made with rigorous design of the interior paying an homage to the original wooden church. However the paintings were chosen to be made by famous contemporary artists.
Artists Kuutti Lavonen and Osmo Rauhala painted a total of 101 works of art to the church in 2006-2009.
After the completion of the paintings, the church has become a very popular attraction to visit by both tourists and pilgrimages all over the world.

The church's rich wooden loft structures, deep barrel vaulting, subtle stone walls and dense benches make for a beautiful chamber music-like interior of a small church. Its acoustics make medieval music intimate, delicate and touching.

St. Olaf's Church in Tyrvää
Address: Kallialan kirkkotie 50, 38210 Sastamala, Finland
The city center (Vammala) is about 4 km from the church and about 13 km from the center of Karkku.
Signs from Sastamalantie (road no. 249).

There is a wheelchair access to the concert hall.
A personal assistant can enter the concert for free.

Homepage of St Olaf's Church in Tyrvää / Congregation of Sastamala (in Finnish)