Museum in Melody

At the time of our visit, the National Museum of Finland was hosting a cool temporary exhibition. It was about the most notable Finnish composer of all time, Jean Sibelius, and his wife Aino. As the entire exhibition space was fulfilled with the sounds of his music, here is an example I recommend you to listen while reading this article.

Jean & Aino Sibelius

The exhibition was created and opened for the artist’s 150st birthday. On this occasion, the visitor has chances to see some of the rarest examples of his musical sketches and other working processes for the first time ever, along with his and his wife’s personal belongings, that also used to be hidden from public.

Jean Sibelius, exhibition in the National Museum of Finland
Exclusive and partially unknown sketches on exhibit.

Travellers who visit Finland in the summer time can also visit the Ainola, the artist’s family home, named after his wife’s first name, Aino. The exhibition is dedicated a lot to the couple’s life. The Aino’s wedding dress and several cerimonial clothes are represented here. There is a virtual exhibition of sounds, that can be accessed for free on this link. Each work represented here is accompanied by a highly fun story from the artist’s life.

According to many stories, Jean was an emotional and enthusiastic creative person, and that leaded to many difficulties in his marriage and family life, particularly because of his partying and drinking habits, that he tried to quit many times. One of his notable quotes is the following:

Whereas most other modern composers are engaged in manufacturing cocktails of every hue and description, I offer the public pure cold water.
Read more at:

Sibelius-05 Jean&Aino Sibelius, the exhibition in Helsinki

Natural landscapes of Finland

As we all know, there is no story we entirely tell inside a museum. In Finland we had an opportunity to meet the environment in which their culture developed. The family home Ainola is situated in the countryside, and Jean Sibelius was completely inspired by the landscapes of his country. As we chose the winter time – polar night for this trip, we had a pleasant opportunity to see how many special types of artistic inspiration may occur here.

The National Museum of Finland has many interesting projects and initiatives. One of them is the Christmas Tree Forest, the outdoors project for nature and sustainable development. We also loved the typical antique room in the Museum’s permanent exhibition space.

December in Jyvaskyla. Photo taken at about 12pm, on one of many lakes that surround the city.

Violin and the childhood passion

Before becoming an artist, Jean Sibelius dreamed of becoming a famous violinist. Due to his passion for perfection, e once said:

My tragedy was that I wanted to be a celebrated violinist at any price. Since the age of 15 I played my violin practically from morning to night. I hated pen and ink—unfortunately I preferred an elegant violin bow. My love for the violin lasted quite long and it was a very painful awakening when I had to admit that I had begun my training for the exacting career of a virtuoso too late.

However, most of his music is still based on violin. So the exhibit designers chose this scenery for the entrance:

National Museum of Finland - Jean Sibelius, the artist's 150th birthday

Don’t forget to check the virtual exhibition of his sounds 🙂

Also, follow the series 6 Amazing discoveries in Finland and get more stories!

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