Mattias Bäckström

Image of Mattias Bäckström
Norwegian version of this page
Phone +47-22857192
Username
Visiting address Niels Henrik Abels vei 36 P. A. Munchs hus 0371 OSLO
Postal address Postboks 1010 Blindern 0315 OSLO
Other affiliations Cultural History and Museology

Ongoing research

Mattias Bäckström has a PhD in the History of Science and Ideas, and is currently a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Centre for Museum Studies at the Department of Culture Studies and Oriental Languages.

In his research project Making things matter. Meaning and materiality in museum displays, Bäckström examines how concepts of knowledge were used and reshaped in and by means of exhibited collections and permanent exhibitions in museums in Berlin, Copenhagen, London and Stockholm, from c.1880 to c.1920.

Analyzing both exhibited collections and permanent exhibitions as interfaces of meaning and materiality, he shows how various forms of prehistory, art history and cultural history were produced in and by means of them.

The postdoctoral project spans three years, from 2015 to 2018; in 2016, Bäckström has chiefly conducted empirical studies during research stays in the aforesaid cities. A detailed description of the research project can be found in The Journal of Nordic Museology, No 2, 2015 (pp. 133–141). Fulltext.

Academic interests

Views of history, ideals of society and productions of knowledge in and by means of nineteenth and twentieth century museums, exhibitions and conservation practices.

Images, objects and spaces, and maps, buildings and landscapes from historical and theoretical perspectives.

Exhibition production as research process.

Courses taught

Museum and Heritage: Context and Communication (University of Oslo, MUSKUL4000)

Critical Museum Studies: Theory and History (University of Oslo, MUSKUL4200)

Methods in Museum Studies (University of Oslo, MUSKUL4210)

Heritage Production, Eilert Sundt and Digital Humanities (University of Oslo, KULH4015)

Cultural History of Museums (University of Oslo, KULH2002)

History of Conservation (University of Oslo, KULH2010)

Changing Identities - Culture-Historical Perspectives (University of Oslo, KULH1030)

 

Critical Exhibition Studies (University of Gothenburg, FKGCES)

Exhibition Production (University of Gothenburg, KLS404)

Politics and Ideology in Cultural Heritage (University of Gothenburg, KA1120)

Culture and Ideology (University of Gothenburg, KP1100, module 4)

Background

In 2012, Mattias Bäckström successfully defended his PhD thesis in the History of Science and Ideas at the University of Gothenburg in Sweden: Hjärtats härdar. Folkliv, folkmuseer och minnesmärken i Skandinavien, 1808–1907 (Hearths of the heart. Folk life, folk museums and historical memorials in Scandinavia, 1808–1907), published by Gidlunds förlag in 2012.

The doctoral thesis shows, among other things, how museums of cultural history interconnected ideas and views on art, history and scholarly knowledge with historical remains and reconstructions when constructing exhibitions and other re-enactments.

Bäckström has also conducted research on the history of cinemas in the region of Västernorrland in Sweden (see publications below). Moreover, he has studied History of Art, with emphasis on the History of Architecture and Built Environment, at Uppsala University in Sweden. The focus of his art historical Master’s thesis and Bachelor’s thesis was on institutions of government of the early twentieth century and on historical museum and exhibition practices, respectively.

In addition to his academic background, Bäckström has professional experience from the museum sector and heritage conservation sector in Gothenburg, Sundsvall and Härnösand in Sweden. He has worked primarily as a museum curator – as a curator and project leader of exhibitions, festivals, seminar series and concert series – but also as a researcher and investigator in heritage and exhibitions projects.

Current book

Bäckström’s experience from university research and exhibition productions forms the point of departure of his scholarly monograph Att bygga innehåll med utställningar. Utställningsproduktion som forskningsprocess (Building content with exhibitions. Exhibition production as research process), published by Nordic Academic Press in 2016.

In the book he examines exhibiting as idea and process through historical, theoretical and practical perspectives, and discusses thoroughly a new kind of research activity that takes place in exhibition productions: exhibition-specific research.

See information at the website of Nordic Academic Press (in Swedish).

Tags: History of Ideas, Museums and Museology, Cultural History, History of Architecture and Built Environment, Exhibition Production

Publications

Bäckström, Mattias (2016), Att bygga innehåll med utställningar: Utställningsproduktion som forskningsprocess, Lund: Nordic Academic Press. 978-91-88168-57-3 (298 pages).

Bäckström, Mattias (2015), Making things matter: Meaning and materiality in museum displays, In: Eva Silvén et al. (eds), The Journal of Nordic Museology, No 2, 2015. ISSN 1103-8152 (pp. 133–141). Fulltext.

Bäckström, Mattias (2012), Hjärtats härdar: Folkliv, folkmuseer och minnesmärken i Skandinavien, 1808–1907 (diss.), (Hearths of the heart: Folk life, folk museums and historical memorials in Scandinavia, 1808–1907), Möklinta: Gidlunds förlag. ISBN: 978-91-7844-843-2 (372 pages). Abstract.

Bäckström, Mattias (2011), Loading guns with patriotic love: Artur Hazelius’s attempts at Skansen to remake Swedish society, In: Simon J Knell, Peter Aronsson, Arne Bugge Amundsen et al. (eds), National Museums: New Studies from around the World, London and New York: Routledge. ISBN: 978-0-415-54774-1 (pp. 69–87).

Bäckström, Mattias (2011), Museet som centrum i samhällsbygget: Universellt, internationellt och interassociationellt på Göteborgs Museum under 1860-talet, In: Mats Sjölin (ed.), Att fånga det flyktiga: Göteborgs Museum 150 år, Stockholm: Carlssons Bokförlag. ISBN: 978-91-7331-453-4 (pp. 119–153).

Bäckström, Mattias (2011), Om bjälkar, myter och vetenskap i museala rumsinteriörer, In: Henrik Björck et al. (eds), Språket i historien, historien i språket: En vänbok till Bo Lindberg, Arachne 22, Gothenburg: University of Gothenburg, Department of Literature, History of Ideas, and Religion. ISBN: 978-91-976239-3-3 (pp. 43–58).

Bäckström, Mattias (2010), Hembygden som självkännedom och folkbildning: Theodor Hellman och daningen av en poetisk hembygd och centralanstalt för en nationell enhetsskola på Murberget i Härnösand, In: Ane Hejlskov Larsen and Sigurjón Baldur Hafsteinsson (eds), The Journal of Nordic Museology, No 1, 2010. ISSN: 1103-8152 (pp. 7–28). Fulltext.

Bäckström, Mattias (2010), Att skapa lappar: Om en debatt och två expeditioner till lappmarkerna, In: Heidi Hansson, Maria Lindgren Leavenworth and Lennart Pettersson (eds), Regionernas bilder: Estetiska uttryck från och om periferin, Studier i språk och litteratur från Umeå universitet 12, Umeå: Umeå University, Department of Language Studies. ISBN: 978-91-7264-964-4 (pp. 74–87). Fulltext.

Bäckström, Mattias (2009), Att ta spjärn: En essä om relativism, platonism och metautställningar med utgångspunkt i Alla dessa stolar på Göteborgs stadsmuseum, In: Eva Persson (ed.), UtställningsEstetiskt Forum #2009, Archives of the Nobel Museum 13, Stockholm: The Nobel Museum. ISBN: 978-91-977335-2-6 (pp. 139–145). Fulltext.

Bäckström, Mattias (2008), Den snygga utställningen: När den arkitektoniska formen segrar över innehållet, In: Eva Persson (ed.), UtställningsEstetiskt Forum, July 2008. ISSN: 2000-6934. Fulltext.

Bäckström, Mattias (2007), Konstkupper: Plundringståg i heliga hus, In: Ninni Wahlsten, Anders Tapper and Mårten Leo (eds), Brott och trakt: En kriminell resa genom Sverige, Svenska Turistföreningens årsbok 2007, Stockholm: STF, Swedish Tourist Association. ISSN: 0283-2976 (pp. 79–90).

Bäckström, Mattias (2006), De försvinnande minnenas prins: Om svenskhet och folkkaraktärer i prins Wilhelms kulturhistoriska filmer, In: Cecilia Verdinelli Peralta (ed.), Ord & Bild, No 6, 2005. ISSN: 1402-2508 (pp. 27–37).

Bäckström, Mattias (2006), Övervakning, säkerhet och Munchs omåttlighet: Kyrkstölderna i Norrland och kuppen mot Munchmuseet i Oslo, In: Johan Kärnfelt (ed.), I skuggan av samtiden: En vänbok till Sven-Eric Liedman och Amanda Peralta, Arachne 20, Gothenburg: University of Gothenburg, Department of History of Ideas and Theory of Science. ISBN: 91-976239-0-3 (pp. 51–70).

Bäckström, Mattias (2005), Ljudbilder och biomörker: Om brytpunkter i biografernas historia i Medelpad och Ångermanland, In: Anna Cedergren (ed.), Biografliv, Sundsvall: ISKA – Cultural Heritage of Industrial Society, Sundsvall City, and Stockvik Community Centre. ISBN: 91-631-7660-2 (pp. 106–155).

Bäckström, Mattias (2005), Striden om biosalongerna: Folkbiografer eller privata biografer i Folkets hus, In: Klaus Misgeld (ed.), Arbetarhistoria: Meddelande från Arbetarrörelsens arkiv och bibliotek, No 116, 2005:4, Stockholm: Swedish Labour Movement's Archives and Library. ISSN: 0281-7446 (pp. 25–30).

Bäckström, Mattias (2003), Frizon och lagrum: Världsarv och riksintresse som kulturmiljö och tillväxtpotential, In: Per-Uno Ågren (ed.), The Journal of Nordic Museology, No 2, 2003. ISSN: 1103-8152 (pp. 109–139). Fulltext.

Bäckström, Mattias (2003), Kulturarvens speglingar, In: Per-Uno Ågren (ed.), The Journal of Nordic Museology, No 1, 2003. ISSN: 1103-8152 (pp. 71–94). Fulltext.

Bäckström, Mattias (2003), Kyrkstölderna en illegal miljonindustri: Mattias Bäckström om ett plundringståg i Norrland 1994–2003, In: Sundsvalls Tidning, Kultur, the 10 November 2003.

Bäckström, Mattias (2002), Murbergskyrkan: Protestantisk medeltid för 1930-talets Norrland, In: Skikt – tidskrift för Länsmuseet Västernorrland, No 6, October 2002, Härnösand: Västernorrland County Museum. ISSN: 1650-3015 (pp. 22–23).

  • Bäckström, Mattias (2015). Making things matter. Meaning and materiality in museum displays. Nordisk Museologi.  ISSN 1103-8152.  (2), s 133- 141 Full text in Research Archive. Show summary
Published May 5, 2015 11:52 AM - Last modified Nov. 22, 2017 2:28 PM