On 1 March 2024, Åland Post celebrates the 40th anniversary of Åland stamps with the issue of a miniature sheet designed by internationally active illustrator Tzenko Stoyanov. “Each stamp carries a story about Åland. For 40 years, these miniature works of art have conveyed images of Åland to the outside world and attracted both collectors and visitors. The theme of this year’s anniversary edition is limitless communication. With warmth and humour, the motif illustrates a dream journey through stamps with Åland and postal elements. History and tradition meet future and innovation, showing the joy of collecting stamps, sending, and receiving mail,” says Johanna Finne, Marketing Design Manager at Åland Post Stamps.
When the first Åland stamps were issued on 1 March 1984, it was the result of a long-term process that started already in the 1950s. The turning point came in 1979 when the Ålanders turned to the Ministry of Justice, justifying the request for their own stamps by saying they would be an important symbol of the autonomy. In 1982, President Mauno Koivisto approved the Åland Stamp Ordinance, and the first Åland stamps were issued in 1984.
From 1984 to 1992, the Posts and Telecommunications of Finland was responsible for the stamp production, while the motifs were produced in collaboration with the Åland provincial government and its stamp delegation. On 1 January 1993, a new Autonomy Act came into force, giving Åland the right to establish its own postal administration. The Åland Post now took over the production and sale of Åland stamps, which have now been issued for 40 years.
A debutante in the context of stamps, Swedish-Bulgarian illustrator Tzenko Stoyanov took on the challenge of capturing the essence of Åland stamps and stamp collecting. He describes his work with the anniversary edition:
“I wanted to give the miniature sheet a timeless, fairy-tale feel through a slightly surreal story where the sea becomes space, the boats spaceships, and the birds letters. With the motif, I want to show that there are no limits to communication and that Åland, through the Post, extends a hand to send love and peace to the world and the universe. I drew everything by hand before processing it digitally, all in a more or less traditional style with a contemporary flavour.”
- Name Åland stamps 40 years
- Date of issue 1 March 2024
- Artist Tzenko Stoyanov
- Design Johanna Finne
- Edition 20 000
- Denomination 2 × €6
- Price FDC €13.00
- Stamp sizes 35 x 28 mm, 21 × 28 mm
- Sheet size 120 × 80 mm
- Paper 110 g/m2
- Perforation 13 per 2 cm
- Process 4-colour offset + embossing
- Printer Cartor Security Printers
Order the miniature sheet and first day cover at alandstamps.com, by post to Åland Post Stamps, P.O. box 1100, AX-22111 Mariehamn, Åland, Finland, e-mail email@example.com or telephone: +358 18636639.