The National Museum of Finland will return over 2,000 Sámi artefacts from its collections to the Sámi community and Sámi Museum Siida in 2021. The exhibition is our way of honouring this repatriation that is significant even at an international level.
The contents of the exhibition will include about 150 items from the Sámi collection, archived materials, photos, and works by Sámi artists. The Sámi collection of the National Museum has been compiled over 170 years, from 1830 to 1998. The items acquired for the collection at various times reflect the ideas and values of their time and collectors. The exhibition will showcase the significance of cultural heritage to people and identity and encourage us to think about the control and ownership of cultural heritage. Repatriation is a sign of change in both society and museum operations.
The planning and multi-art implementation of the exhibition entity will be carried out together with the Sámi community and Sámi Museum Siida. The content is directed by Sámi activist Petra Laiti, while Sámi visual artist Outi Pieski is in charge of the art choices and visual direction. The exhibition is produced by the National Museum of Finland.