Accelerator – a multidisciplinary laboratory

Culture & Society

In 2015, Astrid Söderbergh Widding, the Vice-Chancellor of Stockholm University, officially founded Accelerator—a totally unique and innovative venue and concept. Accelerator will transform a former physics laboratory at the university into a new arena for exhibitions, film screenings, talks and interdisciplinary projects that connect the humanities, social science and science departments—a multidisciplinary laboratory at Stockholm University.

The concept and vision for Accelerator developed during several years of close collaboration between Stockholm University and Magasin III, initiated by Margaretha Rossholm Lagerlöf, Professor Emerita in Art History at Stockholm University and David Neuman, Museum Director at Magasin III and affiliated professor and honorary doctor at Stockholm University’s MA program Curating Art.

Exhibitions, other public events and projects will be developed within the framework of Accelerator by the Artistic Director at Accelerator, Richard Julin, but also in certain projects with the help of specially appointed teams representing all faculties and institutions of the university. The aim of the programming will be to create opportunities to advance knowledge and create foundations for new research and development, in addition to providing space for laboratory investigations and exhibitions. The basic concept is to create a meeting place where people with different areas of expertise can analyze, compare and discuss art. Accelerator will also welcome people from outside the University to the campus and as a way of initiating new opportunities and inspiring new ways of thinking.

"It will be a place where you can think freely and where art can encourage you to do so – a free zone for thinking”, says Richard Julin, Artistic Director of Accelerator.

Accelerator’s operations will be strongly reliant on collaborations with external partners who can provide suggestions, basis and resources for innovative and future research and education. A prerequisite to achieve successful, multidisciplinary research is the presence of some 2,500 professors and researchers who represent all subjects and constitute extraordinary intellectual resources able to contribute and engage in future projects at Accelerator. Magasin III Museum & Foundation for Contemporary Art and the Robert Weil Family Foundation are two of the external partners and co-founders of Accelerator, a meeting point between art, science and society.

The Manne Siegbahn Laboratory at Frescati, a former underground physics laboratory, will be renovated and rebuilt to house Accelerator with a projected opening date in 2019.