Admission with Museum Card

Jrn Donner – Travelling 1951–68

Hakasalmi Villa, Helsinki

  • 31.3.2023–3.9.2023

Experience Jrn Donner's unique travelling photographs at Villa Hakasalmi.


Film director, writer and politician Jrn Donner (1933–2020) travelled throughout his life, and he left behind a remarkable archive of photographs. The existence of Donners photographs – and their real quality – only came to light a few months after his death. The images reveal a completely new side of the multi-talented Donner, which you can witness in the photo exhibition Jrn Donner – Travelling 1951–68, opening at Villa Hakasalmi on 31 March.

The photographs are of high artistic quality, showing people, encounters, street scenes, and travels ranging from the Sahara Desert to the Cannes Film Festival. There are pictures from all over the world – Europe, Africa, Asia, the Far East, the United States, and Latin America.

They record fleeting moments captured by Donners camera: ordinary everyday life, politicians, and the splendour of film stars. Landscapes and cultures of the past come to life in an unexpected way in the exhibition, which also includes a few letters written by Donner and souvenirs from his travels.

The exhibition working group consists of Tuula Kousa, Anders Carpelan, and Hannamari Shakya, who have worked in Donners residence at Pohjoisranta 12, among other places. As the curator of the exhibition, Hannamari Shakya went through the entire archive. Based on Jrn Donners original idea, the working group decided to focus on photographs taken on trips abroad.

The trio has also co-authored a book entitled Jrn Donner – Matkalla, P resa, Travelling 1951–1968, which Donner Productions and Otava will co-publish around the time the exhibition opens. Researcher Jaana Munck is producing the exhibition on behalf of the Helsinki City Museum, and exhibition design is by Osmo Leppl.

It is a challenge to choose photographs posthumously, since the task of a curator is to ask questions, for which in this case there can be no answers. The photographer bares a side of himself or herself through the camera lens. Here we have Jrn Donner, publicly a provocative figure not given to signs of humility, revealed above all as an individual with an avid, inquisitive, and very human gaze”, says Hannamari Shakya.

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Museum contact details

Hakasalmi Villa
Mannerheimintie 13b, 00100 Helsinki

(09) 3107 8519

Museum website

Yhteydet julkisilla

Näytä reitti museolle Matkahuollon reittioppaassa


Katso reitti Matkahuollon reittioppaassa


Hakasalmi Villa, Mannerheimintie 13b, 00100 Helsinki


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Admission fees

Admission with Museum Card
Admission with Museum Card

14/10/0 , alle 18-vuotiaat ja Museokortilla vapaa psy

Payment methods

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Opening hours

Mon Closed
Tue 11:00-19:00
Wed 11:00-17:00
Thu 11:00-17:00
Fri 11:00-17:00
Sat 11:00-17:00
Sun 11:00-17:00

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