An exhibition about Tove Jansson opens in the Moomin Museum on 20 April 2024

Mustavalkoinen valokuva, jossa nainen seisoo nojaten isoon maalaukseen.

Tove Jansson (1914–2001) is one of the most acclaimed Finnish artists of the 20th century. Jansson was a painter, illustrator, cartoonist, writer, comic strip artist and scenographer, but she is best known as the famed creator of the Moomin characters. The exhibition An Artist’s Life look backs at Jansson’s career and the biographical milestones and relationships that shaped her artistic journey.

Jansson was born into a family of artists whose free-spirited values and way of life find reflection in the philosophical outlook of her art. The exhibition examines the formative impact of her childhood growing up in a cultured Swedish-speaking home. It traces the phases of her maturation through her studies, her breakthrough as a painter, her early wartime relationships in bohemian artist circles, and her long-lasting relationship with Tuulikki Pietilä, with whom she spent many summers of love and creative work on the island of Klovharun. It also sheds light on Jansson’s multifaceted career as an illustrator and writer, which has often been overshadowed by her Moomin oeuvre. Flags are flown across the nation every year on her birthday, August 9th, to celebrate both Jansson and Finnish art. 

An Artist’s Life – Tove Jansson20.4.2024–18.5.2025Moomin Museum Observatory 

Photos: Lehtikuva / Reino Loppinen