Ingmar Bergman in Skåne

It was while living and working in Skåne during the mid-1950s that Bergman enjoyed one of his most productive artistic periods. 

However, the first time he lived in the region was back in 1944-6, during his successful tenure as director of the Helsingborg City Theatre. After a period spent in Gothenburg and a brief stay in Stockholm, he once again made his way south and was in 1952-9 employed as director and artistic advisor at the Malmö City Theatre. He enjoyed tremendous success at these two theatres, and his time in Malmö is often described as the ‘Bergman epoch’. During this period, he staged seventeen productions and established ties with several of the actors who were to feature heavily in his future creative endeavours, such as Bibi Andersson, Max von Sydow, Ingrid Thulin, Harriet Andersson, Gunnel Lindblom, Naima Wifstrand, Max von Sydow, Gertrud Fridh and Gunnar Björnstrand.

With performances at the City Theatre taking place in the autumn and spring, the summers were reserved for filming, during which the Malmö ensemble was complemented with other actors. (More information is available under the ‘Misc’ menu.)

In total, Bergman shot scenes from eight of his films in Skåne, many of which are among his most notable. The Skåne landscape, with its wide horizon and rugged, rocky coastline (the Bjäre peninsula), inspired Bergman to new heights in terms of his imagery and depictions of nature. At Jordberga Castle, Övedskloster and Norrviken Gardens, he discovered environments that particularly fired his imagination, as he did moreover in Ystad’s well-preserved old town and the familiar streets of Helsingborg. And where else could the finale of his masterpiece Wild Strawberries take place other than on Universitetsplatsen in Lund?

Read more about Bergmans time in Skåne here

The Bergman project in Skåne

Bergman in Skåne is a project that was initiated as part of the the year of Bergman celebrations in order to shed light both on the director’s work in Skåne as a whole and on the particular locations in the region that are important to and feature heavily in his films, to which this website may be considered a gateway.

Hovs hallar – an european treasure

In 2017 Hovs Hallar was appointed, as the tenth location, a Treasure of European Film Culture. Treasures of European Film Culture is a list of places of a symbolic nature for European cinema, places of historical value that need to be maintained and protected not just now but also for generations to come. During a ceremony a special “Treasure of European Film Culture” emblem was inaugurated at the location. Some of the other treasure locations are the Potemkin stairs in Odessa, Institut Lumière in Lyon, Plaza de Espana in Sevilla, the Parajanov museum in Yerevan and the Bergmancenter on the island of Fårö.

Read more here

The locations today

Since there was a need not only for film stills and archival footage but also for new and updated pictures, the photographer and director Nils Petter Löfstedt – a Guldbagge nominee for his documentary Himlens mörkrum (Heaven’s Darkroom) – set off on a road trip around Skåne with the aim of visiting Bergman’s filming locations and giving them his own particular interpretation.

Read more here

Watch the film featuring all Bergman’s Skåne locations