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The current and future premises of the Malmö Art Academy

The Malmö Art Academy. Photo: Kennet Ruona
The Malmö Art Academy. Photo: Kennet Ruona

In her own words, Dean of the Faculty of Fine and Performing Arts Solfrid Söderlind writes about the future of the Malmö Art Academy.

In the last few days there has been an intense debate in the media about the Art Academy, which has been described as threatened with shut-down due to an eviction notice from the city of Malmö on its current premises. Lund University has been warned that the city needs the building as soon as possible, preferably within a year, with the aim of using it as a primary and lower secondary school. The city needs all the premises it can get hold of to open new schools, because of pressure from the number of pupils to be enrolled.

Within Lund University, we have been working since 2015/16 on creating shared premises for the faculty, i.e. a common location for the activities currently housed in the Theatre Academy, the Academy of Music, the Art Academy and the IAC. This major project will take a few years and offers us great opportunities to develop our activities for the future. This type of process certainly takes time, but the date of 2027 which has been circulating in the media has never been mentioned in our work. We are hoping for a much faster process. Work with the city of Malmö is underway and the discussions are constructive. At the moment, we are looking into alternative locations. There is no decision on any single location, and they all need to be investigated as soon as possible.

Early in 2015, Lund University was notified by the city of Malmö that the city needs to take back the current building and therefore plans to give notice to the Art Academy on the premises. This makes the location of the Malmö Art Academy into a key issue for us. The city of Malmö needs the current premises as soon as possible. Our faculty’s relocation in a shared campus, on the other hand, presumes a premises programme, planning, procurement and removal work, all of which require time.

The best alternative for the Malmö Art Academy would be to remain in its present premises until it is time to move into the new shared faculty campus. Depending on how long that takes, the Malmö Art Academy may need a satisfactory intermediate location.

The threat of shut-down presented in the media is rooted in worry about the Malmö Art Academy being forced to move as early as within one year, before an alternative location can be made ready, which would indeed be devastating for the organisation. But Lund University has no intention of closing the academy, and the city of Malmö has expressed the intention helping to prepare a workable solution in advance of the academy needing to move out. So there is no question of closure or shut-down of the Malmö Art Academy.

In order to create clear conditions for the Malmö Art Academy’s work in satisfactory premises, a meeting between Lund University management and the city of Malmö will be held on 28 June. As soon as the faculty has access to new information on this issue, we will publish it on the academy’s website.

Solfrid Söderlind

Faculty of Fine and Performing Arts