MEET THE LOCALS: MAGDALENA CZARNECKI

Magdalena Czarnecki, the Art Director who is inspired by Scandinavian influences.

This well traveled creative, shrugged off Australia and Europe to return home and hone her skills. Magdalena reveals her favourite parts of Stockholm.

 


What does your job in Stockholm involve?
My name is Magdalena Czarnecki, I am an Art Director and Designer, living in Stockholm. I’ve been working at the creative agency Snask for five years, but soon I’ll be going solo and spreading my wings in the new year. The reason I love my job is that different clients/projects demand a different type of craftsmanship. One day you'll be researching a certain (sometimes obscure) topic learning something new and the other, you are hand painting typography in the studio. Or you could be running around the city looking for the perfect paper, material, or set design props. But most of my time is spent in front of the computer tweaking designs for hours. It’s a good thing to have an OCD kind of personality and buy yourself a gym membership to compensate for all those hours sitting down.

Why is Stockholm a great place to do what you do?
Our long winters and cold climates give us a lot of time to spend indoors being creative. Singing, drawing, writing, and decorating in order to tackle the darkness. There are a lot of talented creative people here, who are inspiring to be around. Despite growing up here, I finished my whole design education and the start of my career abroad, which has really made me appreciate Stockholm as a creative city. It's small but progressive city with a lot of history. Learning to embrace the changing seasons instead of hating them is key.

Have you lived in Stockholm your entire life?
I lived abroad for about seven years then returned home a couple of years ago. I was doing my design education in Sydney, Australia. It was great! Warm, inviting people and striking nature. But it did feel like it was lacking history after a while. Then I received an art residency in the north of Italy (loads of history). Whilst there I started noticing how conservative Europe can be – too much history! So Sweden to me has the perfect mix, even if it can feel a bit cold an d moderate at times, it’s a very good place to live. It’s been really healthy to see how different parts of the world do things, but I realised that the grass is not always greener. I am very happy that Sweden is becoming more and more diverse as time goes on. And with people from all around the world moving here, hopefully the suburbs will become more interesting.

What’s your favourite thing about living in Stockholm?
First of all it’s really beautiful, I will never get tired of how it looks. There are also different islands that make you feel like there is constantly something new to explore. If I go to explore the islands it feels like I’m on a weekend trip in another city because you tend to stick to your own island. Otherwise, nothing beats a never ending Swedish summer night with a pink sky.

What’s your favourite place or neighbourhood to hang out in the winter months in Stockholm?
I would wander around, go gallery jumping and see some exhibitions around the city. The Modern Museum is often good, then you can go to Djurgården and have a Swedish Fika - coffee and cake at one of my favourite places Blå Porten. There you will find beautiful gardens and old art posters on the walls. I am also a sucker for good views. You’ll find the best views of Stockholm in Södermalm, at Katarinavägen, Monteliusvägen and up at the allotments in Tanto.

If you had a tourist friend visiting the city for one weekend, what would you recommend?
Hard question, but you have to visit the area in Södermalm called SOFO. It´s easily accessible, it’s cosy and you’ll find good restaurants, bars and shops all concentrated in that area. Don't forget to pop into my favourite art bookstore Konst-ig while visiting.