16 December 2016

Immersive ‘Adventures in Moominland’ now open at the Southbank Centre in London

An interactive Moomin exhibition in the UK’s largest arts centre, Southbank Centre in London, is now officially open. ‘Adventures in Moominland’ is the first major UK exhibition on the Moomins followed by the first Tove Jansson UK exhibition at the Dulwich Picture Gallery in autumn 2017.

Moomin Southbank Centre's Adventures in Moominland credit Vic Frankowski
Tove Jansson’s niece, Sophia Jansson
Photo: Vic Frankowski

The exhibition at the Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall presents new insights into Tove Jansson’s life and the influences behind her work with rare archive objects and illustrations built into the experience. The show is part of Nordic Matters – a year-long exploration of Nordic art and culture at Southbank Centre throughout 2017.

The exhibition displays objects never-before exhibited in the UK: from original illustration; artworks and 3D models; to letters and personal items from Tove’s studio in Helsinki and her family island of Klovharu, where she lived for almost thirty years.

Sophia Jansson, niece of Tove Jansson, said: “Tove’s work was very much inspired by her life experience – both on the highly personal level of her close relationships and more generally in terms of the influence of Finnish society, politics, lifestyle and landscapes. Southbank Centre’s approach of combining archive objects from Tove’s home and studio with immersive worlds straight from the pages of the Moomin books is the perfect way to tell the story of how this artist and her creations developed in conjunction with one another.”

In the scenes of the Moomin stories

The highly experiential exhibition brings Tove Jansson’s Moomin stories and creations close to the audience by using the archival objects as a part of the narrative. Exhibition with audio guidance perfectly tells the story of the adventurous life in the Moominvalley, an idyllic and peaceful place where the Moomins live in harmony with nature.

Moomin Southbank Centre's Adventures in Moominland credit Vic Frankowski(7)
Photo: Vic Frankowski

The exhibition explores the influence of the Nordic landscape within the Moomin books, from the dense forests of Moominvalley to a canvas tent on the water’s edge in Finland and the snowy, Winter landscape represented in Moominland in Midwinter (1957). The show includes a preparatory watercolour sketch for the cover of the book. In recognition of Tove’s love of jazz, the exhibition includes a jazz soundtrack composed by Aki Rissanen and commissioned by Southbank Centre.

Moomin Southbank Centre's Adventures in Moominland credit Vic Frankowski(4)
Photo: Vic Frankowski

Adventures in Moominland

“Join us on an enthralling journey through our wondrous Moominland – clamber through forests, huddle in caves or set sail on the high seas to try and find the Moomin family. Along the way you can learn how Tove Jansson created these unique landscapes, characters and stories, while uncovering some special original drawings.”

  • 16 December 2016 – 23 April 2017, Spirit Level at Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall
  • Recommended for ages 7+
  • For more information on tickets and opening hours please visit the Southbank Centre website southbankcentre.co.uk