Rafael Wardi (b. 1928) is known for his lively treatment of line and his rich, color-drenched palette. His work combines an intimate knowledge of art history with highly distinctive, colorist studies of daily life. He embraces a serial working method, delving deeper into each theme while engaging in a self-reflexive study of the nature of painting. While each floral composition is unique, each one unfurls its petals toward the same objective.
Wardi is a celebrated artist who has also made his mark as a respected teacher and an early Finnish pioneer of art therapy. He is the recipient of numerous awards including the Pro Finlandia medal and the Finnish State Art Prize. One of his most famous paintings is his official portrait of the former Finnish president Tarja Halonen (2002). His work is found in leading Finnish museums including the Ateneum Art Museum and the Sara Hildén Art Museum. Wardi has lived in the Helsinki district of Lauttasaari since the 1920s.