Gallery and antiquarian bookstore Laterna Magica turns 30! Established in 1989 this meeting point for book lovers and art enthusiasts has hosted almost 800 exhibitions in its galleries.

Book Gallery at the heart of Helsinki

Laterna Magica is an antiquarian bookstore and a photography gallery in the Kruununhaka district in Helsinki. In addition to exhibitions we host a variety of events from concerts to artist talks.

Treasures of the antiquarian bookstore

Laterna Magica has a book collection of over 40 000 titles. We specialize in books on photography and movies. and have a whole gallery dedicated to art books. There is still something for every taste: history, fiction, poetry, children's literature and much more.

History of Laterna Magica

The story of Laterna Magica began already in 1984, when brothers Mikko and Aapo Pekari in collaboration with Tytti Sutela put together an exhibition of three dimensional holograms in gallery Hippolyte. That exhibition was called Taikalyhty, Magic Lantern. That exhibition later toured around Finland and was also exhibited in Stockholm and Oslo.

Pekari brothers established Laterna Magica in 1989 as an antiquarian bookstore that specializes in movie and photography books and also hosted photography exhibitions. First exhibitions were by renowned photographer Caj Bremer and his son Stefan Bremer whose manipulated pictures of Soviet politburo members were hung in the windows. The name of the store was inspired partly by the aforementioned exhibition and partly by an Ingmar Bergman autobiography that came out a few years earlier.

In between years 2006-2018 gallerist Risto Korhonen was at the helm of the galleries and exhibitions. In the summer of 2018 the businesses were passed on to Eira Sillanpää and Tapio Wilska. In the picture here you can see the new owners Eira and Tapio in the middle with Risto, the former gallerist on the left and one of the founding brothers, Mikko on the far right.


Laterna Magica has three unique gallery spaces. Attached to the bookstore is a Book Gallery room where exhibitions are hung above the bookshelves. At the end of the labyrinthine hallway are Tile Gallery and Cellar Gallery. Next to the Tile gallery is a small cupboard-like space called Small stage, which often works as an extra space but has even held private exhibition in smaller scale.

Tile Gallery is known for its unique tile mosaic floor made by ceramic artist Catharina Kajander. tunnusmerkki on keramiikkataiteilija Catharina Kajander. Cellar Gallery floor consists partially of 1,8 billion years old natural bedrock.
See the upcoming exhibitions


Laterna Magica hosts a variety of events and weekly happenings from concerts to book events and discussions. With almost every exhibition there is also a chance to meet the artists behind the works. One of our weekly specialities is Book Yoga held at the gallery.
See what is going on