Standing Moss Shaman Girl, 2017
Stoneware, nylon fiber
43.30h x 11w x 11d in
Sacrificial Deer, 2015
Ceramic and glass
30h x 25w x 30d in
Two Headed Moss Bunny and Moss Girl, 2015
Ceramic and nylon fibre
30h x 40w x 15d in
Born in 1974
Lives and works in Fiskars, Finland
Kim Simonsson leads the viewer into an imaginative, fairytale-like world inspired by the forests of his native Finland, folklore, the idea of apocalypse, and the ambient hum of contemporary life— among other things. The life-size ceramic “Moss People” he is best known for are innocent yet beguiling figures, mostly children. Together they make up a far-reaching vision that hints at the sublime. Simonsson is a superb sculptor who uses clay with great sensitivity for his subjects that stands out in all of his gestures. Every sculpture is handmade in the artist’s studio in Fiskars Village, Finland.
“The name Moss People refers to children’s innate camouflage,” explains Simonsson. “The moss green figures blend perfectly into their natural surroundings, just as a soft carpet of moss covers the ground, rocks, and tree trunks and acts as a sort of protection. In the Moss People’s world, lost and disconnected children, evoking different characters… choose leaders and end up creating false idols.” In addition to the Moss Children, Simonsson plays with milky white, cobalt blue, and anthracite black glazes, as well as metallic lustres of a wide variety. Each such variation on his overarching theme expands the mythos that surrounds his work, unifying each and every sculpture into a fascinating whole, almost a gesamtkunstwerk.
Selected as one of The Art Newspaper’s “Six Captivating Discoveries at Design Miami/ 2021,” the “Moss People” are the result of a unique technique combining stoneware, paint, and nylon fiber, which gives the figures their soft and mossy texture. Most recently, Simonsson’s Moss Children were chosen to headline the 6th annual thematic edition of Lille3000, a culture and arts fair in Lille, FR. Blown up to monumental size, the continue to captivate viewers, collectors, curators, and critics across the world.
Simonsson almost became a soccer player but, while biking to a practice one day, he lost his soccer cleats and decided to become an artist. He entered the Department of Ceramic and Glass at the University of Arts & Design and was thereafter captivated by the three-dimensional possibilities of clay. In 2004, he was awarded the Young Artist of the Year prize and invited to work as guest artist for the Art Department Society of Arabia, the famous Finnish ceramics maker.