The Värikallio neolithic rupestrian drawings found in the area of the Hossa Nature Center is the biggest monument of ancient rock art in Finland. The neolithic rupestrian drawings found on the erect stone wall rising from Lake Somerjärvi were made in the Stone Age about 3500-4000 ago.

Neolithic Rupestrian Drawings as a Story of a Thousand Years

The neolithic rupestrian drawings are found on the rock located along a water way used in ancient times. They were made by ancient people who were either in boats or were standing on the ice surface. The rock has 61 images. They deal either with hunting or with shamanism. Apparently, the drawings show the ancient people’s routes or some of the events. These neolithic rupestrian drawings are the only rock art images available in the Kainuu region. They were discovered in 1977.

Ancient People’s Routes and the Magic of Hunting

Yet in ancient times Hossa was located at the water ways intercrossing. They go to the Gulf of Bothnia in the west and to the White Sea in the east. Apparently, ancient people making their drawings on the rocks of Värikallio wanted to fix their routes and various events on the rock surface. Normally, the Finnish neolithic rupestrian drawings are found on rocks located along important water ways. The Värikallio rocks as well as the other similar places are special due to good echoing.

As a rule, neolithic rupestrian drawings are associated with the magic of hunting. That sort of rocks might have been places where shamans performed their rituals. There are several images of the same horned person or the same person dressed as a wild beast on the Hossa rocks. The horned person might be either a witch or a shaman as horned headwear was an item of witch’s clothes. At least later, that was typical of northern peoples dealing with hunt. The drawings might have stimulated the birth rate. According to Pekki Kivikasa who studied Finnish neolithic rupestrian drawings, most Värikallio drawings show us women and some of them are in labor.

Värikallio drawings in Hossa differ from other Finnish rock art images. Small moose images drawn in lines have not been found in other areas of Finland. The image of a man with a V shaped face, eyes and a nose is special. No boat images are found on the rocks of Värikallio, which is uncommon.

Finnish rock art images were not engraved but drawn. Ancient artists used ground of red and yellow colors. They got it heating clay containing iron. They added either blood, or some fat stuff or yolk to the solution.

Opening Hours

  • Värikallio neolithic rupestrian drawings are available throughout the year.
  • In summer one can get to the site walking along a path. There is a viewing platform in front of the rock.
  • In winter on can get to the site either on skis or by motor sledge.
  • The staff is not available in Värikallio.
  • Admission to the site is free, except for thematic tours.

Site on neolithic rupestrian drawings