Aboa Vetus & Ars Nova

Turku, Finland

Aboa Vetus (Old Turku) is a museum of archaeological history. Originally, plans were for only Ars Nova, the contemporary art museum, but during its construction a number of structures and artifacts dating back to the Middle Ages were discovered, and the archaeological excavation that was commissioned eventually transformed into Aboa Vetus. The two museums were combined in 2004.

The ruins excavated in the Convent Quarter originate from the Middle Ages. In the midst of these ruins, museum visitors progress through the permanent exhibition, which focuses on the 15th century. The artefacts on display originate from the excavations carried out in the town quarter where the museum actually sits.

Reference: Aboa Vetus & Ars Nova

Comments

Your name

Website (optional)



Details

Founded: ca. 15th century
Category: Museums in Finland
Historical period: Middle Ages (Finland)

Rating

4.2/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Anna-Maria Heino (5 months ago)
A cozy little museum with some ruins of old Turku as well as modern art. Interesting place and even a good cafe. Museum shop is full of interesting, if not a tiny bit over prized stuff that has to do with modern arts and Turku. You should definitely consider visiting.
Emiel Mostert (6 months ago)
Turku is a town you should not miss. Art all over town and some great museums, this is one of them. Just go and enjoy.
Manuel Pereiras Torres (6 months ago)
The historical exhibition (Aboa Vetus) is good, but the Ars Nova now has just one exhibition in the first floor, and the other in the second floor is only pictures and texts about the history of the Palace that the museum was before(and I was expecting some modern art) . Also all the balconies were closed. So maybe is not the best time of the year to visit the museum
Bianca W (9 months ago)
This place is two museums in one! Downstairs, there are medieval ruins and exhibits on historic Finland, and upstairs you'll find a modern art gallery, and a river runs right through the building, which makes for an amazing café in between the two museum areas! The medieval ruins were re-discovered during excavations in 1995 and include a church and residential buildings with lots of information about the time period. Upstairs in the contemporary art gallery, exhibitions and installations are constantly changing. This one's well worth a visit!
Kai Kimppa (10 months ago)
The permanent exhibition changes from the museum’s own wide variety of art with the changing exhibitions, thus making both sides always worth seeing. The restaurant has one of the best lunches in the city, and if you take the full lunch, including a very filling salad table and Mbakery’s always interesting cakes you won’t leave hungry even if you came in so.
Powered by Google

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Limburg Cathedral

The Cathedral of Limburg is one of the best preserved late Romanesque style buildings. It is unknown When the first church was built above the Lahn river. Archaeological discoveries have revealed traces of a 9th-century church building in the area of the current chapel. It was probably built in Merovingian times as a castle and the chapel added in the early 9th century.

In 910 AD, Count Konrad Kurzbold (cousin of the future King Konrad I) founded a collegiate chapter of 18 canons, who lived according to the rule of Bishop Chrodegang of Metz, on the hilltop site. The original castle chapel was torn down and a three-aisled basilica was built in its place. The foundations of this basilica have been found beneath the present floor.

The construction of current cathedral is dated to 1180-90. The consecration was performed in 1235 by the archbishop of Trier. It seems certain that the cathedral was built in four stages. The first stage encompassed the west facade, the south side aisle, the choir and the transept up to the matroneum. This section forms the Conradine church. The second stage consisted of the addition of the inner pillars of the south nave. In this stage the bound system was first introduced. In the third phase, the matroneum in the southern nave was built. The fourth stage included the north side of the transept and the choir matroneum. By this stage Gothic influence is very clear.

The interior was destroyed by Swedish soldiers during the Thirty Years War (1618-48) and reconstructed in a late Baroque style in 1749. The Baroque renovation was heavy-handed: the surviving medieval stained glass windows were replaced; all the murals were covered up; the ribs of the vaults and columns of the arcades were painted blue and red; the capstones were gilded; the original high altar was replaced. The colorfully painted exterior was coated in plain white and the central tower was extended by 6.5 meters.

The collegiate chapter of Limburg was dissolved in 1803 during the Napoleonic period, but then raised to the rank of cathedral in 1827 when the bishopric of Limburg was founded. Some renovations in contemporary style followed: the walls were coated white, the windows were redone in blue and orange (the heraldic colors of the Duke of Nassau) and towers were added to the south transept (1865).

Further changes came after Limburg was incorporated into the Kingdom of Prussia in 1866. It was now the Romantic period and the cathedral was accordingly restored to an idealized vision of its original Romanesque appearance. The exterior stonework was stripped of all its plaster and paint, to better conform with the Romantic ideal of a medieval church growing out of the rock. The Baroque interior was stripped away and the wall paintings were uncovered and repainted.

Further renovations came in 1934-35, enlightened by better knowledge of the original art and architecture. Art Nouveau stained glass windows were also added. A major restoration in 1965-90 included replastering and painting the exterior, both to restore it to its original appearance and to protect the stonework, which was rapidly deteriorating while exposed to the elements.

The interior is covered in medieval frescoes dating from 1220 to 1235. They are magnificent and important survivals, but time has not been terribly kind to them - they were whitewashed over in the Baroque period (1749) and uncovered and repainted with a heavy hand in the Romantic period (1870s) before finally being restored more sensitively in the 1980s.