When you think of museums, you probably picture large works of art or historical artifacts. But there’s one museum in Sweden that focuses on a completely different type of subject – beer.
It might not seem like a subject that could easily lend itself to a full museum exhibition. But beer isn’t what it used to be. Gone are the days where bars offer one or two types of the beverage. In Sweden, as in the U.S., craft brewing has grown dramatically in recent years. The country currently has at least 145 breweries, compared to just 9 in 1988.
Stockholm’s Museum of Spirits is located in the island of Djurgarden in two 18th-century naval buildings. And Stockholm based design studio Form Us With Love is responsible for the museum’s exhibit on beer making. Form Us With Love’s Jonas Petterson told Fast Company:
“We wanted to try to explain Swedish beer culture both from a historical point of view and what’s happening right now. And we wanted to do so in a way that was attractive to beer enthusiasts and more casual beer drinkers, which I thinks includes us: we’re definitely not beer nerds. So the biggest challenge was how to attract both these different worlds.”
The exhibition includes three different sections. First is the wall of beer, a visual representation of beer bottles arranged by hue along the wall. There’s also a section that conveys the history of brewing through a series off podiums. Each one signifies a different period in the history of Swedish beer, ranging from the Vikings to an examination of vintage beer steins.
Then, there’s a brewing station where visitors can learn about the actual process of making beer.
While not exactly the Mona Lisa, the exhibit is unique and clearly has a growing audience throughout Sweden and other parts of the world. Especially if the Museum of Spirits can effectively target both beer enthusiasts and casual beer drinkers, they should have no problem drawing in visitors.
Image: Museum of Spirits