Amos Rex, Kamppi 

The Amos Rex museum combines some of the best of old and new Helsinki amid striking architecture, much of which is below ground. The cultural institution showcases historic artefacts from the former Amos Anderson Art Museum and also hosts contemporary exhibitions in its cavernous interior. The vast space was created by hollowing out the earth beneath Lasipalatsin aukio – a public square that has itself been given a curvy and contoured makeover. Above ground, the architecture is no less impressive, with bars, cafés and a 590-seat cinema inside the functionalist 1930s gem that is Lasipalatsi.

22-24 Mannerheimintie, 00100 
+358 (0)9 6844 4633

Designmuseo, Kaartinkaupunki 

The functional beauty of works by Finnish designers such as Alvar Aalto and Kaj Franck can be seen throughout the city but the Designmuseo looks at Finnish brands too. These include the trusty Nokia mobile phone (which gave Finland a firm footing in tech) and Angry Birds (which might still be on your handset), accompanied by a profile explaining how the characters emerged and took flight across the globe. You’ll also be able to find temporary showcases on designers such as the ceramics and glass master Timo Sarpaneva.

23 Korkeavuorenkatu, 00130 
+358 (0)9 622 0540 

Emma, Espoo

Espoo – Helsinki’s calmer, greener sibling – is a short metro ride away. There you’ll find Emma (the Espoo Museum of Modern Art) in a former printworks known as Weegee near Tapiola metro station. Emma houses one of the largest exhibition spaces in Finland and regularly hosts contemporary art from international stars such as Anish Kapoor and Finnish photographer Ola Kolehmainen. On site you’ll also find Galleria Aarni, the Espoo City Museum, the Toy Museum Hevosenkenkä and the Finnish Museum of Horology.

5 Ahertajantie, 02100 
+358 (0)43 827 0941

Images: Sami Heiskanen, Andrew Taylor

Go back: Helsinki


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