Our Museum collections from four continents include objects of art, ritual and everyday use.

Detail of the Africa display in the museum’s collection exhibition. Photo: Karri Anttila / Lvngroom

The Helinä Rautavaara Museum collections include objects of art, ritual and everyday life from Africa, Asia and Latin America. The collection of items documenting Rautavaara’s personal history includes objects from Europe. 

The collections, including some 3,000 items, focus on 20th century African and Brazilian objects. Among much else, the Museum has Finland’s largest collection of items from West Africa.

Accessibility to the Helinä Rautavaara collections has been improved by having many of its objects and images added to the online search service Finna, a much used resource for researchers, libraries, archives and other museums in Finland. 

Items at the Helinä Rautavaara Museum are available via the main search at In the appropriate box, enter a search term such as the name of an object or the subject of a photograph. Then limit your search by organisation to the Helinä Rautavaara Museum.

At the moment, the information on Finna is only available in Finnish.

The Helinä Rautavaara Museum participates in a modern documentation project as part of TAKO, the Finnish Heritage Agency and the National Museum of Finland network. Subjects of the Museum’s documentation efforts have been, among other things, bilingualism and the recording of consumer behaviour in interviews, pictures and videos.

The Museum receives donations in its own areas of documented recording, that is related to those regions which Helinä Rautavaara crossed oceans to visit and to phenomena of cultural encounters. The Museum does not accept donations of weapons.

Read the Museum’s collection policy, which is available in Finnish: Kokoelmapoliittinen ohjelma 2016–2018 (PDF)

Learn more about objects in the collection

Kokoelmanäyttely Kasvokkain, suomeksi (PDF)

The Collection Exhibition Face to Face, in English (PDF)

Samlingsutställningen Ansikte mot ansikte, på svenska (PDF)