Eero Järnefelt:
Slash and Burn


Oil on canvas.

33,0 cm x 44,5 cm.

Eero Järnefelt (1863–1937) painted Slash and Burn (1893) in Väisälänmäki, Lapinlahti, just north of Kuopio, where the artist’s family spent the summer of 1893. In the spirit of plein air realism, Järnefelt depicted these workers amid the smoke and ash arising from the burning of a field to increase soil fertility. The forested hills in the distance form a lyrical backdrop for the harsh reality of the foreground. In its colours and composition, this painting is reminiscent of the well-known work Under the Yoke, which he completed later in 1893, but without the soot-covered little girl of the later iteration.