"Musketöörien aikaan" exhibition sheds light on the history of maps

The exhibition "Musketöörien aikaan – karttoja 1500- ja 1600-luvuilta" (At the time of the musketeers – maps from the 16th and 17th century) of the National Archives of Finland presents collector Timo Reenpää’s map materials concerning France. The exhibition displays maps as objects, but it also provides information about the history of cartography from the period of two centuries.

In the history of archives and old literature, enthusiastic collectors have sometimes managed to save documents and parts of publications that were thought to have been destroyed. With its collaboration with private collectors, the National Archives of Finland wants to highlight the importance of the collectors’ work and give the audience the opportunity to see these collections that are seldom displayed.

The oldest maps of France date back to the beginning of the 15th century. At first, they concentrated on describing the coastal regions of the country. The first maps that covered France’s inland areas started to appear in the 16th century. The maps displayed at the exhibition of the National Archives of Finland illustrate how maps changed and developed from the beginning of the 16th century to the late 17th century. At the same time, the exhibition is a good example of how maps combine science and art: a map can be both a necessary utility object in shipping and an independent work of art.

The exhibition Musketöörien aikaan – karttoja 1500- ja 1600-luvuilta is open in the National Archives of Finland’s Helsinki facility (Rauhankatu 17, exhibition space) from 8 September to 29 October 2020 from Tuesday to Thursday from 11 am to 3 pm, and on request for small groups.

Further information

Development manager Anne Wilenius, and from 11 September researcher Pertti Hakala (groups),