Helsingin kaupunki, kulttuurin ja vapaa-ajan toimiala

In 2020, HAM’s programme is centred around the first ever Helsinki Biennial, to be held on Vallisaari


In 2020, the Helsinki Art Museum’s exhibition programme is closely tied to the first ever Helsinki Biennial, which will be held on Vallisaari Island in the summer and early autumn. The content of the Biennial will be complemented by two HAM main exhibitions in the arched halls of the upper floor of Tennispalatsi: Laura Gustafsson and Terike Haapoja’s Museum of Becoming, which opens in the spring, and Katharina Grosse’s solo exhibition, which is the highlight of the latter half of the year and continues HAM’s exhibition series showcasing contemporary international artists. Grosse’s exhibition consists of two installations created for HAM, one of which the artist will be painting on-site. The impressive exhibition will allow visitors to literally step inside a painting.

HAM’s programme for 2020 also offers a broad showcase of Helsinki’s very own art collection. Gustafsson&Haapoja’s humanity-challenging exhibition will include both Museum of Nonhumanity video installation, which is part of HAM’s collection, and the artist duo’s new work, a collection intervention. Works from HAM’s collection will also be prominently featured in the exhibition of the works of visual artists who lived in the Lallukka Artists' Home in Töölö, curated by Marja Lahelma. The collection also has a major role in the exhibition showcasing the works of Vilho Lampi, organised in collaboration with the Oulu Museum of Art and centred around the beloved painting View of Liminka, which is part of the Bäcksbacka Collection. Finally, the exhibition of Perttu Saksa’s photographs depicting the tools used by sculptor Laila Pullinen and other items found in her studio also has a clear connection to HAM’s collection, seeing as the collection includes a number of Pullinen’s miniature sculptures, quite possibly created using the very same tools.

In addition to the aforementioned exhibitions, new works from seven Finnish and international artists will be displayed in the HAM Gallery.


Exhibitions at HAM Helsinki Art Museum in 2020:

Vilho Lampi
14 February–18 October 2020

Vilho Lampi (1898–1936) was a landscape painter from Liminka, in the north of Finland, whose life was cut short by suicide. Lampi’s strong and expressive career lasted only 14 years, during which time he experimented with many styles of painting, ranging from expressionism to pointillism. Vilho Lampi spent his whole live balancing between his calling as an artist and his duties at the family farm. He often had time for painting only in the evenings and at night. The subjects of his paintings came from Liminka itself: portraits, people close to him, the milieus of cottages and landscapes.

HAM’s exhibition is assembled around the View of Liminka painting, which is part of Katarina and Leonard Bäcksbacka’s donated art collection. Most of the other 50 or so paintings featured in the exhibition are on loan from the Oulu Museum of Art, in collaboration with which the exhibition was assembled.

Museum of Becoming
3 April–16 August 2020

Museum of Becoming is Gustafsson&Haapoja's first major museum exhibition in Finland. Encompassing both of HAM's large arched halls, the exhibition calls for new ways of thinking about humanity and its relationship with the environment, other species, community and future. The three-part exhibition includes the installation Museum of Nonhumanity, the collection intervention Remnants and the artists' new
video installation Becoming.

Completed in 2016 and winner of the state prize for media art, Museum of Nonhumanity is an imaginary museum dedicated to the violent history of differentiating between human and animal. In Remnants, art works and items from the City of Helsinki's collections show the figure of the human as a frail and undefined part of a landscape dominated by the larger forces of history, nature and time. The video installation Becoming focuses on the moment of necessary social transformation in the face of the climate crises and asks what modes of becoming otherwise are emergent in the present. The exhibition will be accompanied by the publication of Bud Book: A Manual for Earthly Living. The exhibition is part of the Helsinki Biennial programme.

Katharina Grosse
8 October 2020–September, 2021

German artist Katharina Grosse (b. 1961) is internationally known for actively exploring ever new possibilities of how and where a painting can appear in our lives and examining the impact of painting in present-day reality. At HAM Helsinki Art Museum she will be taking over the main exhibition halls on the upper level to present two new large-scale installations, defying the two-dimensional conventions of painting. One of the works she will be painting on site, using her powerful and raw signature colours.

Grosse will transform the exhibition halls radically. She will create immersive spaces, engaging in an active correspondence with the museum’s architecture and focusing on painting as a process and intervention. As they move within the works, the visitors are invited to become active participants.

Perttu Saksa
Autumn 2020–spring 2021

The subject of the pictures that make up photographer Perttu Saksa’s (b. 1977) exhibition is the estate of sculptor Laila Pullinen (1933–2015). Saksa’s intensive style of photography captures the tools and personal items used by the artist known for her strong personality. The result is a new world of pictures created between two artists in which you can feel the presence of both.

Perttu Saksa is the winner of the 2014 Fotofinlandia Prize and the 2018 design competition for former president Mauno Koivisto’s grave memorial. HAM Helsinki Art Museum’s collections include works from both Perttu Saksa and Laila Pullinen.


The Artists of Lallukka
13 November 2020–August 2021

Built with funds bequeathed by Juho and Maria Lallukka, the Lallukka Artists' Home in Helsinki’s Etu-Töölö was completed in 1933. Among the first artists to move into the house were Eero Nelimarkka, Ester Helenius and Ellen Thesleff. Since then, over 130 visual artists have lived and worked in Lallukka. The walls of Lallukka have sheltered many notable Finnish painters and sculptors over the years, from Eva Cederström to Kain Tapper. Even the young Tove Jansson spent some of her years as a student in her father Viktor Jansson’s studio home in Lallukka. As such, the life of the Artists’ Home is intriguingly tied to Finnish art history and broader social phenomena.

Curated by art historian Marja Lahelma, PhD, the exhibition focuses on the works of visual artists who lived in Lallukka. The exhibition will feature approximately 80 works from artists who lived there in different periods, from 1933 all the way to present day. The majority of the works are from HAM Helsinki Art Museum’s collection. In connection with the exhibition, Parvs Publishing Ltd and HAM will be publishing a richly illustrated book on the artists of Lallukka, which is based on Marja Lahelma’s research.

HAM Gallery in 2020

The HAM Gallery showcases new visual art and rising artists. In 2020, the Gallery will be showcasing the works of Corinna Helenelund, Enni Suominen, Iiris Kaarlehto and Inka Kynkäänniemi, Laura Wesamaa, Hemmo Siponen, Dylan Ray Arnold & Océane Bruel and Inka Bell.

We reserve the right to make changes to the exhibition programme.

Press photos: hamhelsinki.fi/en/ham-info/media-bank/ (password: hammedia).

HAM Helsinki Art Museum
Tennispalatsi, Eteläinen Rautatiekatu 8, 00100 Helsinki
Open: Tue–Sun 11–19, closed on Mondays


Head of Exhibitions Pirkko Siitari, HAM, tel. 040 590 8803, pirkko.siitari@hel.fi


About Helsingin kaupunki, kulttuurin ja vapaa-ajan toimiala

Helsingin kaupunki, kulttuurin ja vapaa-ajan toimiala
Helsingin kaupunki, kulttuurin ja vapaa-ajan toimiala


HAM Helsinki Art Museum

HAM Helsinki Art Museum looks after an art collection that belongs to the people of Helsinki, which includes over 9,000 individual works of art. HAM maintains and accrues this art collection, which also includes the city’s public artworks. In its domestic and international exhibitions held at Tennis Palace, HAM showcases modern and contemporary art. HAM Helsinki Art Museum

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