Finland takes great pride in its cultural life and arts. Acclaimed names range from the master composer, Jean Sibelius, to the father of modern Finnish architecture, Alvar Aalto.
Today, it’s the rock bands, including HIM, The Rasmus, Nightwish and Apocalyptica, with record sales topping a million copies worldwide, that make Finnish music known abroad. In May 2006 Finland was very much in the spotlight after the Finnish rock band Lordi won the Eurovision Song Contest held in Greece.
Kiasma, the Museum of Contemporary Art, is situated in central Helsinki. The building was designed by American architect Steven Holl. (City of Helsinki Picture Bank/Matti Tirri)
The state supports culture and arts by providing financial assistance for cultural events. There are hundreds of arts and cultural festivals every year. The most popular outdoor musical events include the Pori Jazz Festival, the Savonlinna Opera Festival, the Kaustinen Folk Festival and the Kuhmo Chamber Music Festival.
Finland has more than a thousand museums, the most important being the National Museum; the Museum of Finnish Art, Ateneum; and Kiasma, the Museum of Contemporary Art. Finland has more libraries per inhabitant than any other country in the world. The citizens of Helsinki, for example, have 51 public libraries and a mobile library at their service.
Virtual Finland: Hard Rock Hallelujah!
Virtual Finland: Alvar Aalto –an appreciation
Virtual Finland: Cinema in Finland
Virtual Finland: Finnish Literature Today
Virtual Finland: Finnish Contemporary art
Virtual Finland: The Story of Finnish Design
Virtual Finland: Finnish music in a nutshell
Virtual Finland: Ballet and dance
Virtual Finland: Finnish Theatre
Finnish National Opera
National Board of Antiquities
Museum of Contemporary Art Kiasma
Ateneum Art Museum
Ministry of Education