TOBIAS HOFSÄSS

Slussen

The Slussen area is the hub of public transport in Stockholm, Sweden, linking together a metro station, commuter rail line, bus terminal, ferry harbour, and a complex cloverleaf-shaped road interchange and associated pedestrian passages and walkways. The name comes from the word “sluss”, which means canal lock as the area Slussen sits exactly where there are locks linking Lake Mälaren and the Baltic Sea. The history of the development of the channel at Slussen date back to the 1600’s and have evolved into a political debate of reconstruction needs since the early 1970s.

Change is inevitable, change is part of history and with any radical change to a place you lose a part of its life and identity.

This is my experience having lived most of my life in Berlin, a city of change. I am absorbed in the history and politics of city life but more than this I am fascinated by the physical places themselves: the shapes, the lights, the colours, the smells, the sounds, the feeling of the pulse of a city and the motions around it. At Slussen, I felt this movement.

Everything connects in Slussen. People pouring through the tunnels like water, being pushed up or down to the next level. I let myself float around and found emptiness that I did not expect. It let me see a special world beneath, a construction with all its colors and shapes. It is filled with voices and motions that you feel and hear even when there is no one around.

In May 2009 the city of Stockholm announced a new master plan for the Slussen area. The reconstruction work began in 2013 and will last until 2022. I tried to preserve and document Slussen as I knew it while I was living in Stockholm between 2006 and 2017.