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The Culture Department consists of six divisions: Malmö School of Arts, Malmö Konsthall, Malmö Art Museum, Malmö Museer, Malmö City library and Malmö City Archives. Cultural Director Mrs Elisabeth Lundgren is head of the department at its office in the Flensburg building on Södergatan 9.
The Department works with strategic development in the cultural sector, preparing agends items for the Culture Committee, Cultural Grants, Sommarscen Malmö, Culture for Children and Young People and overall matters in terms of finances, human resources and communication. The Department´s management group also includes representatives from Malmö City Teatre and Malmö Symphony Orchestra, the two cultural companies that are owned by the City of Malmö.
The unit of Cultural Grants
The unit of Cultural Grants has the job of allocating various forms of funding to the independent cultural sector in Malmö. The independent cultural sector is comprised of independent cultural organizations and cultural workers in all fields of art who operate outside the cultural institutions. Most of the support goes to cultural activities at the professional level. The funding is given partly in the form of operational subsidies to bodies that regularly arrange concerts, performances, exhibitions, etc. and partly in the form of project grants for events that are held occasionally or for a maximum twelve-month project period. Independent cultural workers can apply for cultural bursaries once a year.
Culture for Children and Young People
Culture of Children and Young People is the Culture Department´s resource, coordination and development unit for culture for children and young people age 0 to 19. Activities include developing artistic and pedagogical concepts, purchasing and disseminating cultural offerings, coordinating and further education.
Sommarscen Malmö is an outdoor festival of performing arts that takes place for two months every summer. Concerts, performances and cinemas are presented in 40 different sites and venues in the open air and are all free of admission.
Malmö School of Arts (Malmö Kulturskola) offers children and young people in Malmö between the ages of 7 and 19 teaching in art and design, dance, animated film, music, comics and drama on their spare time. All students at the school are given the opportunity to take part in ensembles, orchestras, choirs, exhibitions, concerts and various other cultural projects. Malmö Kulturskola is located in Kulturhuset Mazetti but does also offer teaching at schools all over the city.
To make sure that every child in Malmö gets in touch with Malmö Kulturskola and its various artforms the TryItOut-assembly meet all seven-year-olds and give them the opportunity to encounter and experience culture in a playful way. TryItOut inspires children to participate in cultural life and gives them the opportunity to actively choose amongst cultural interests and hobbies.
During 2013 Malmö School of Arts will continue to develop to be able to reach all children and will start working with the El Sistema-model in different areas of Malmö.
Malmö Konsthall is 2000 m² for contemporary and international art - famous for its great flexibility, generous space and fantastic light. The construction materials are light and simple: concrete, glass, wood, aluminum. An exhibition space that poses endless challenges to the artists and great exhibitions to the visitors.
At the inauguration in 1975 the architect Klas Anshelm himself described the building as "A large, low concrete box, opening up toward the park and the skies ´light´". Malmö Konsthall´s primary mandate is to exhibit both international and Swedish contemporary art. Malmö Konsthall also offers an extensive educational programme for schools and daily guided tours for its visitors. Malmö Konsthall also has a bookstore and a restaurant.
At Malmö Art Museum, you can discover Nordic contemporary art and wander through time and space showing the history and development of painting and furniture-making. The museum presents approximately ten exhibitions a year in the form of art historical exhibitions, retrospective exhibitions of individual artists or group exhibitions with various themes. Malmö Art Museum has one of the largest art collections in the country. It contains primarily art from the Nordic countries. The foundation consist of art from the 1910s and the 1940s donated by Herman Gotthardt. Over the last 20 years, the museum has built up Sweden's largest collection of Nordic contemporary art, which is continually expanded through purchases and donations.
The museum's profile is also strengthened by a series of special collections, such as the extensive Carl Fredrik Hill collection, a unique collection of Russian art from the turn of the 20th century, as the collections of art by Ester Almqvist, Christian Berg, Max Walter Svanberg, Gunnar Norrman and Carl Fredrik Reuterswärd. In recent times, important donations have been made by the artists Torsten Andersson, Barbro and Holger Bäckström and Dan Wolgers. During spring and autumn, chamber music concerts are held in the Skovgaardsalen.
Southern Sweden´s largest museum is located on Malmöhusvägen in the heart of Malmö in a beautiful park-like setting surrounded by canals. At Malmö Museer you can see everything from the Nordic region´s oldest surviving Renaissance castle to fantastic vehicles and live animals. The museum´s permanent exhibitions focus on history, natural history, technology and seafaring. There are also about a dozen temporary exhibitions every year. Malmö Museer is responsible for preservation of the cultural environment and has extensive collections, including those of textiles and photography. Malmö Museer also owns Malmö's smallest museum, Ebbas hus, on Snapperupsgatan as well as Slottsmöllan, Fiskehoddorna and Wowragården in Söda Sallerup.
Malmö City library is well known for its beautiful architecture as for how it seeks out new ways to offer knowledge and entertainment in a multicultural Malmö. A few years ago Malmö City Library was selected as Library of the Year in Sweden. It also received the Swedish National Encyklopedia´s Knowledge Award and the City of Malmö´s Diversity and Integration Prize, among other things for using the services of multilingual upper secondary school students who speak languages most commonly spoken by local immigrants to help visitors who do not understand Swedish.
Malmö City Library has over 500,000 books and literature in some 60 languages, newspapers and magazines from around the world, DVD films, audio and talking books, and video games. The library has special departments for the environment, travel, and design. Malmö City Library focuses strongly on serving the needs of the business community and is also one of the European Commission´s Europe Direct information relay centers. Many free events for both children and adults are organized at the library every year.
Malmö City Archives house documents going back 700 years in time as well as archives from the modern era. The oldest document is a letter of privilege issued by King Magnus Eriksson in 1353. The storage facility contains some 15 000 shelf meters of national, municipal, and private archival documents. besides text documents, there are also considerable collections of photographs, drawings, maps, posters and films.
The City Archives are responsible for preserving documents and making them accessible to the general public. The City Archives offers research services and educational activities and also present exhibitions on various themes.