Local time
Welcome to ArkDes on September 27th
Café Blom is open as usual

ArkDes is currently closed for refurbishment.

The history of ArkDes

Photo: Matti Östling ArkDes at Skeppsholmen.

From a small professional archive to a national hub for architecture and design, housed in an award-winning building, this is the journey of ArkDes.

1950s: The Swedish Association of Architects (SAR) establishes a photography archive to disseminate contemporary architecture to the press and public.

1962: The Swedish Museum of Architecture is founded by SAR, opening its doors at Odengatan 3 in Stockholm. The museum inherits SAR’s collection of drawings, photographs, and models.

1966: The Swedish Museum of Architecture opens to the public at Skeppsholmen.

1978: The museum becomes a state institution and is renamed the Architecture Museum.

1991: Spanish architect Rafael Moneo wins the international competition to design the new buildings for the Architecture Museum and the Modern Museum.

1998: The new buildings for the Architecture Museum and Moderna Museet at Skeppsholmen are inaugurated. The museum’s exhibition space is located in the old naval drill hall (built 1853, designed by Fredrik Blom). A new addition to the historic buildings houses archives, a library, and offices. The museum complex is awarded the Kasper Salin Prize.

2001–2003: The museum temporarily relocates from Skeppsholmen due to issues with mould. Temporary exhibitions are held at Fredsgatan 12, while the permanent exhibition is displayed in the Skeppsholmen Church.

2004: The Architecture Museum reopens at Skeppsholmen on February 14.

2009–2010: The museum’s remit is expanded to include design (in public activities but not in collections) and it is given a role as a meeting place for architecture and design-related issues.

2013: The government assigns the museum the task of following up the national policy for architecture and design (Policy for Designed Living Environments) and renames it the National Centre for Architecture and Design, or ArkDes for short.

2024: In August 2023, the museum closes for renovation. ArkDes reopens in September 2024, completely transformed by architects Arrhov Frick. Now, architecture, design, designed living environments, and its role as a meeting place are all housed under one roof. For the first time, the largest exhibition hall displays the colletion, in a major exhibition featuring original sketches, models, drawings, and photographs.