Stories and Myths: Kalevala, Folk Traditions and History Painting -thematic tour

Robert Wilhelm Ekman: Ilmatar, 1860. Finnish National Gallery / Ateneum Art Museum. Photo: Finnish National Gallery / Hannu Aaltonen

The tour focuses on the cultural and linguistic roots of the Finnish people, with an emphasis on multiculturality: What does it mean for something to be Finnish? How has Finnish identity been constructed? How does interpretations of a real or mythical Finnishness come across in artworks from different historical periods? What kinds of effects are used in paintings that tell about the history of the Finnish people?

And what about today: How do national myths and stories appear in everyday life in this day and age? The tour examines themes in the Kalevala, with a special focus on one of them. Other mythical and historical works may also be touched upon.
Recommendation: All grades.

Pre-party and afterparty: assignments for before and after the museum visit

Bookings: Finnish National Gallery Service Sales by e-mail: or by telephone: +358 (0)294 500 500 (open Mon – Fri 10:00 – 14:00 – time zone UTC+2).

Show these pictures to your students before the visit to ensure that you will come across at least some works they are familiar with!

Press releases

Magnus Enckell exhibition at the Ateneum – 150 years since the versatile artist’s birth

  A major exhibition of works by the painter Magnus Enckell (1870–1925) will be shown on the third floor of the Ateneum Art Museum, from 23 October 2020 to 14 February 2021. The exhibition offers a comprehensive overview of the work of one of…

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