There are great responsibilities for us that are entrusted to carry forward the legacy of a great man. Solja Järvenpää has handled her important role with enormous spirit, enthusiasm and fortitude. In doing so, she has garnered the respect and appreciation of many for her insightful hand in directing the heritage of Touko Laaksonen, the artist Tom of Finland.
Tom of Finland is a national treasure. Solja, a sparkling jewel.
Be it always remembered that it was Solja that suggested to TOM’s Foundation – Tom of Finland Foundation – that we apply for a Finnish postage stamp. We all know what glory that has bestowed on the master artist and the brilliant light it shines both on Finland and the entire LGBT world community.
How Touko Laaksonen has been reveled as a man here in Tampere though the Sealed with a Secret exhibition is a seed sowed and nourished by Solja. It is not only a tribute to an artist and hero, but a testimonial of everyone who came together to work on it.
The exhibition, Dirty Frames, was only realized with the genius of Solja. Helsinki was treated to Tom and his fellow artists through their comics. The opening was filled with drinking, laughing, singing and, of course, Solja’s dazzling, infectious smile. The humor of Touko teamed with the joy of Solja gave visitors the most amazing and fun-filled show.
Thank you Solja, for your glittering eyes have shown us a whole new realm of possibilities and we are very proud to have you on TOM’s team!
Durk Dehner, president and cofounder
S. R. Sharp, vice president and curator
Susanna Luoto, representative and curator
Tom of Finland Foundation
I got a giant brush (Vuoden sarjakuvateko 2014) for courageous contribution to the Tom of Finland postage stamp and exhibitions. Thank you for the wonderful surprise and the beautiful words Durk, Sharp and Susanna. -SJ