At 110 km long, the Stockholm metro system is often called “the world’s longest art gallery”. More than 90 of its 100 stations have been decorated by artists. Intrigued by the photos I saw when I Googled the Stockholm metro, I decided to check out the most famous stations during my trip to Stockholm. I spent hours one afternoon wandering through different stations, admiring all the colourful artwork and taking photos. In fact, I loved the Stockholm metro so much that I wish I had planned a longer stay in Stockholm so that I could have spent more time exploring it!
For your self-tour of the Stockholm metro, I recommend printing out a map and planning out your route beforehand. Set aside at least three hours for exploring the different stations! To pay for your journey, you can purchase an electronic smart card and load money on it, or you can buy 24, 72 hour or 7-day travelcards.
At T-Centralen, Stockholm’s busiest station, the blue vines and flowers are meant to soothe passengers as they connect to different lines. On the ceilings, you can also see the silhouettes of workers. Artist Per Olof Ultvedt wanted to honour the hard work of the welders, carpenters, steelworkers, engineers, and miners who worked at the station in the 1970s.
Makalös Palace used to stand above this station and various 17th and 18th century artifacts are on display here in glass cases. Ulrik Samuelson painted green, red, and white lines that run along the floors to symbolize the old Baroque garden of the palace. Green symbolizes the green garden, red symbolizes the gravel pathways and white symbolizes the marble statues that used to be in the garden. This colourful station is meant to feel like an underground garden!
The bright colours of the rainbow at Stadion symbolize the colours of the Olympic Ring. Enno Hallek and Åke Pallarp designed this art in 1973 to commemorate the 1912 Stockholm Olympics.
Located nearby the Royal Institute of Technology, this station’s artwork features the four classical elements (fire, air, water, and earth). Sculptures like this dodecahedron represent technological advances.
Walking through this station feels like being in a cave. Radhuset is based on organic architecture, which leaves the bedrock exposed and unsculptured.
The red and green colours of Solna Centrum depict a green forest and red fiery sky. Painted by Anders Åberg and Karl-Olov Björk in 1975 during Sweden’s industrial era, the artwork is meant to highlight the issues of rural depopulation and destruction of the environment. The painted green forest is 1000m long and stretches along the walls of the entire station!
Created by Helga Henschen, the art of Tensta station celebrates the diversity of immigrants who live in the area. There are paintings with the word “brotherhood” written in 18 languages as well as sculptures of animals and plants.
The art in this station was designed by Lars Arrhenius. It features popular characters and symbols from vintage video games and early computer systems.