Afro Finns’ experiences and stories in Helsinki City Museum 22 April–24 September 2023
The upcoming exhibition ‘Being Black – Afro Finns’ Experiences’ offers an overview of the present and past of Helsinki as experienced and told by Afro Finns. Key themes include family and friendships, ideals of beauty, identity and activism. The purpose of the exhibition is to raise awareness of Afro Finnish culture by telling how the Afro Finns are part of Helsinki and the Helsinki identity, and to strengthen the Afro Finnish cultural heritage in the museum’s collections. The exhibition at the City Museum provides an opportunity for Afro Finns to also influence how their own local history and story are conserved.
In this exhibition, the term Afro Finnish culture refers to Finns who have roots in Sub-Saharan Africa and who belong to the African diaspora in a wider sense. However, not everyone who has been defined in this way feels that they are Afro Finns, and blacks and people of African descent living in Finland do not have a shared identity, history or culture.
What is to be conserved for posterity about Afro Finnish culture? This question will be discussed at the City Museum starting from 22 April. Visitors have the opportunity to incorporate their own experiences or images into the exhibition that also serves as a space for workshops, discussions and exchange of experiences.
The ‘Being Black –Afro Finns’ Experiences’ exhibition has been curated by Wisam Elfadl and produced by researcher Eero Salmio. The exhibition design is by Alina Pajula and the graphic design by Jade Lönnqvist. The exhibition is organised in co-operation with Museum of Impossible Forms and the Afro Finnish community in Helsinki.
Being Black – Afro Finns’ Experiences
22 April–24 September 2023
Helsinki City Museum, 4th floor
Photo: Lloyd Polack skiing around 1989. Lloyd Polack’s home album / Helsinki City Museum.