In February, Donald Trump ominously and ambiguously referred to “what happened last night in Sweden”, without explaining what exactly happened. Many dubbed the odd reference as a tool to create an element of fear towards the country.
Now, in a bid to challenge America’s stigma and social disgust towards the Scandinavian country, photographers are fighting back and photographing what really happens in the Swedish night.
Driven by award-winning Swedish photographer Jeppe Wikström’s Expressions of Humankind foundation, the project aims to combat mass hysteria around Sweden following on from provoking from Trump. The best photographers and photo-journalists in the country will collaborate to capture life in the country between 6pm and midnight to encapsulate true and candid Sweden.
A jury will then select the best images – which will be compiled and presented in a unique book. What makes the project even sassier, is that the first copy will be sent directly to Donald Trump.
But the project needs community help and is currently crowdfunding here on Kickstarter. In two days alone, SEK 160,000 has been raised, almost double that of what is needed. The publishers have pledged that if SEK 350,000 is raised a major exhibition will be created that can travel the world, consisting of the 50 very best images.
On the fundraising page, the publishers claim the motivation behind the project is “that the people who live in Sweden are better equipped to tell the rest of the world what’s really happening here. Because we cherish everyday life, with all its nuances, challenges and happiness. Because we think this documentation can serve as an antidote to the mainstream news agenda that reports on conflict, disaster, and celebrities.”
The masterminds behind this project aren’t ones to shy away from colossal collaborations, previously creating the project A Day in the World, working with photographers across 190 countries to document life. What the duo are trying to do is document the parts of life that don’t make the news: everyday striving, everyday happiness and work.
“People have always, for some reason, loved to smear Sweden,” the duo explained to The Local Sweden.”We rub people the wrong way, and are a benchmark for other people at the same time. I think it’s because we manage to combine diversity with success.”