The collection assembled by Karl Hedman forms the museum’s most valuable and central part. The largest part of this collection is on permanent display in the collector’s former apartment, also known as the Hedman floor, in the museum building’s old section. The collection contains both Finnish art from the years 1870-1930 and foreign art mainly from the Netherlands and Italy from the 15th-17th centuries. In addition, the collection contains jewelry and antique items. Furniture, art, and other items that form the different period-interiors reflect the interior decorating and art trends of their time. A part of the period-rooms have been assembled from Hedman’s personal luxury items. Another part of the rooms represents Ostrobothnian living in different social classes in different times. Special attention should be given to the Empire-room and the items within it that reveal the unique Napoleon cult in the regions surrounding Vaasa.
Because of Hedman’s collection the Ostrobothnian museum belongs to the top of the Finnish museums. The museum received a unique addition when Helene Schjerfbeck’s “löytäjä” (finder), a collection owned by the renowned gallery owner Gösta Stenman, came to Karl Hedman. Thus the walls on the Hedman floor are decorated with the works of almost all of the masters from the Finnish golden era and domestic impressionists and expressionists such as Fanny Churberg, Albert Edelfelt, Pekka Halonen, Aukusti Uotila, Akseli Gallen-Kallela, Eero Järnefelt, Magnus Enckell, Hugo Simberg, Tyko Sallinen, Helene Schjerfrbeck, Jalmari Ruokokoski, Juho Mäkelä. Older foreign art such as Paolo Veronese’s and Jacopo Tintoretto’s studies, Jan van Goyen’s and Lucas Cranach’s studies.