It is great that you are coming to the Ateneum for a guided tour of the museum! Prepare for the visit by completing these two discussion assignments. You can choose to have the discussion in pairs or small groups, or with the whole class.

Assignment 1: Expectations for the museum trip

Have you been to the Ateneum before? Maybe you have been to another museum. Even if you are not familiar with museums from previous visits, you may still have an image of them.

Look at these images together, then talk about your expectations and write them down.

Consider the following:

How does it feel to be at the Ateneum?

What are you going to do there?

Will the guided tour be nice, interesting, useful, or something else?

After the museum visit, discuss whether the trip met your expectations. Please remember that we are happy to get feedback. You can send yours to

Assignment 2: Discussion about art

You are coming to see an exhibition called A Question of Time. The exhibition will feature a large number of works, but the guide will only stop to discuss some of them. Many of the works deal with nature, using landscapes and animals as subjects. Another popular subject is people. The exhibition features portraits and people in various activities and settings.

When you look at the works, you may notice many things that are strange to you. You may, however, also want to think about the things that are familiar to you. Can you perhaps relate to the feelings and thoughts of the people in the images?

Choose at least one of the following works to discuss together. Take a good look at the image, and think about what you see. Remember the name of this work, and ask the guide to show you the actual work when you come to the Ateneum. Below the gallery of images, you can find questions to support the discussion.

You can view the images of the works in a larger size on the Finnish National Gallery website.

Questions to support the discussion:

This open-ended question is a good start:

What’s going on in the image?

You can guide and deepen the discussion with questions such as:

Is there anything familiar in the image? Is there anything strange?

Is there anything surprising in the image?

Is there anything in this image you don’t understand?

If you were able to enter the world of the image, what would you see, hear, smell, or feel?

What do you feel when you look at the image?

What kind of a story does the image tell?

Come up with a name for the image.