A thought-provoking exhibition in the Helinä Rautavaara Museum

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2019-09-10 9:01

The temporary exhibition of the Helinä Rautavaara Museum showcases the Mashco-Piro tribe that lives in the Peruvian rainforest. Due to the extensive ongoing fires ravaging the Amazon rainforest, the exhibition is exceptionally topical. The Mashco-Piro exhibition encourages the visitors to think about the status of indigenous peoples in the modern world.

According to Museum Director Ilona Niinikangas, indigenous peoples such as the Mashco-Piro have probably noticed climate change a long time ago. As they lead isolated lives dependent on nature, they are very aware of its state. Climate change is causing difficulties to indigenous peoples, forcing many isolated communities to move and come into contact with other people.

Admission to the museum is free of charge. The museum is divided into two sections. The permanent exhibition houses Rautavaara’s collection that she assembled on her adventures across Amazonia, the Middle East and West Africa. The collection consists of some 3,000 items.

Helinä Rautavaara (1928–1998) travelled the world for many years, photographing and documenting the things she saw. In a 1997 interview, Rautavaara said: “I am interested in rituals, dances and music. I record and film. Individual items are not my area of study. They are parts of the bigger whole.” The Helinä Rautavaara Museum aims to help people from different cultural backgrounds to understand each other and make their respective cultures better known.

The Helinä Rautavaara Museum opened in the Entresse shopping centre on 31 August 2019.The City of Espoo is one of the main supporters of the Helinä Rautavaara Museum.