orange is the happiest colour

Moderna Museet in Malmö

Moderna Museet (literally Modern Museum) straddles over two different art spaces on two very different locations. One is in Malmö in South of Sweden. The other is in Stockholm, the capital city, more than 4 hours away from the first.The museum was founded in Stockholm in 1958 and the satellite branch in Malmö was inaugurated in 2009. As the name suggests the museum houses modern art from 1900 to present day contemporary art. The branding is funky and daring with its freehand punk typographic logo, and the two branches branded magento pink and orange respectively.

The museum is recognised for its ambitious programme of temporary exhibitions. But it is not all transient. There is also a good permanent collection and in that respect, the museum showcases significant Swedish and international art. Homegrown talent includes Ola Billgren and Tora Vega Holmström. Internationally, there is work from the hands of Picasso and Salvador Dalí. As one of the curiousities, the Malmö location displays a model of the Tatlin Tower, i.e. the famous monument to the Third International by the constructivist Vladimir Tatlin.

The museum’s shared collection includes key works by artists such as Marcel Duchamp, George Braque, Alexander Calder, Louise Bourgeois, Niki de Saint Phalle, Henri Matisse and Robert Rauschenberg. In addition, it makes new acquisitions from contemporary artists of our age. To make this possible in Malmö, the collection is funded by the city of Malmö the region of Skåne and partly sponsored by e.on and Deloitte.

As a whole, the museum in Malmö is quite a family-friendly affair. It consists of two levels. The first level or ground floor is a mix of exhibit space, lockers, reception, other facilities plus a dedicated area to arrange talks and seminars. It is also the home to Caféet, the street-facing café that is every bit as orange as it promises — both internally and externally. It is run by a proper chef and prides itself on using very fresh ingredients. One flight up from there, and the second level is dedicated to art exclusively.

The Swedish notion of cultural institutions is both democratic and inclusive, as opposed to being the proverbial ‘hush custodian jobs’ on the alter of fine art found elsewhere. As a result, Moderna Museet arranges a busy programme which reaches out to the wider community. For instance, there are regularly evening artist talks, film screenings and lectures at the art venue.

Notably, one of the successes has been the family workshop (familjeverkstad). It takes place the first Sunday of every month under different themes. As a concept, it invites families to emerge themselves in art on the premises.

To find out more please visit the official website.


Image credits
Top right: © Ludvig Holtenäs, Photography
Middle right: © Max Adolfsson, Photography
Bottom: © Anna Norberg, Photography