The book Viimeiset markat – Suomen markkamääräiset setelityypit 1945–2002 (‘The last markka banknotes – Finnish markka-denominated banknote types in 1945–2002’) has come out.
This informative and richly illustrated book describes the history of Finland’s paper money from the time when Finland enforced cutting banknotes in two until the introduction of the euro. The life cycle of markka banknotes in 1945–2002 is reviewed from both a domestic and an international perspective.
The book contains an abundance of new information on the notes and their design. Impressive illustrations present, for example, previously unpublished banknote sketches from well-known artists. The book also includes a broad selection of interesting numismatic details and information on the evolution of banknotes.
The author, Antti Heinonen, has  a long international career in banknote production. He headed the banknote function at both the Bank of Finland and the European Central Bank, where he was responsible, among other things, for the coordination of the euro cash changeover in the years 2001 and 2002. In the Bank of Finland he headed the Payment Instruments Department, and also acted as secretary to the committees dealing with the motifs and design of the last markka banknote series.
At the same time, the Bank of Finland Museum launches a new exhibition Viimeiset markat (‘The last markka banknotes’) based on the book, running until 30 December 2012.
The exhibition consists of two parts. Display units and wall displays show proposals for the banknote draft competitions held in 1947 and 1982, while the multimedia presentation shows all Finnish markka-denominated banknote types used in Finland since the Second World War.
The exhibition also presents proposals by Matti Visanti and Tapio Wirkkala for the 1947 competition and proposals by Erik Bruun, Torsten Ekström, Eeva Oivo and Pentti Rahikainen for the 1982 competition.
A virtual tour of the new seasonal exhibition can also be taken on the website of the Bank of Finland Museum at
The Bank of Finland Museum is situated in the Kruununhaka district of Helsinki, at Snellmaninkatu 2. Entry to the Museum is free of charge.
For more information, please contact: Jaakko Koskentola, Curator, tel. +358 10 195 702.

Tapio Wirkkala’s proposal for a 100 markka banknote, 1947

Torsten Ekström’s proposal for a 5,000 markka banknote, 1982