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03.09.2020

The Cultural History Museum of Aland and Aland Islands Art Museum, Mariehamn

The Cultural History Museum of Åland and Åland Islands Art Museum are two museums under the same roof in Mariehamn in the Åland Islands, Finland. The building houses even other collections and staff of Ålands Museum, which was formerly the name of the Cultural History Museum, nowadays a wider roof organization for several museums - see www.museum.ax. The building is located in the eastern part of the town, about 200 metres from the harbour. Along with Åland Maritime Museum it is the most important museum in the islands. The art museum is referred to in the Swedish language as the "Konstmuseum" and in Swedish, the Cultural History Museum is often shortened to "Kulturhistoriska".

The Cultural History Museum of Åland traces the history of the islands from prehistoric times up until the present day while the Art Museum houses a permanent collection of local art as well as interesting temporary exhibitions. The museum plays an inspirational place for display of culture of both Finland and Sweden.

Complete history of the development of the islands (Ålands Islands are 6000 islands which are self-governing Islands off the Finnish coast. Said to be politically Finnish but culturally Swedish), from prehistoric times onwards till date, is exhibited.

Local artists are provided opportunities to display their paintings in exclusive areas of the museum. Ten such exhibitions are held every year on varying themes.

The Cultural History Museum of Åland has a permanent collection of artifacts providing details of the history of Åland from prehistoric times to the modern period. Many displays are related to local music, festivals, seafaring and wildlife. Between September 15 and October 17, 2010, the museum hosted a special exhibition containing artifacts found in a shipwreck. This exhibition of treasures found in summer of 2010 was of a shipwreck that occurred in the Baltic Sea in the 19th century. The treasures of the ship on display included the world's oldest champagne & beer bottles.

The Aland Museum was awarded the Council of Europe Museum Prize on April 26, 1983 at Chateau des Rohan. 

The Art Museum has its origins in 1955, when the Åland Art Association proposed it and set up a Landscape Board two years later. A committee for the arts was established and in 1963 they inaugurated the new Åland Art Museum, to be managed by the Åland government. Åland Art Museum contains a broad range of Åland art, from sculptures and paintings to contemporary video art and has some innovative special art exhibitions. Most of the displays are permanent although it also hosts regular temporary displays of local artists.

Prominent canvases exhibited are those of famous local artists like Joel Pettersson (1892–1937) and Karl Emanuel Jansson.”

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