Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden has spoken of her fondness for France in a special video message marking the 50th anniversary of the Swedish Institute in Paris. Institut Suédois, formerly known as the Centre Culturel Suédois, is a Swedish cultural centre in Paris. The House of Culture in Paris includes art, design and photo exhibitions, film screenings, concerts, seminars, a permanent art collection and a café. The organisation was inaugurated by the Crown Princess`s father, then Crown Prince Carl Gustaf, in 1971.
Her Royal Highness opened her message by saying: “Dear friends of the Swedish Institute in Paris. Today, 50 years ago, my father, the then Crown Prince Carl Gustaf, inaugurated the Swedish House of Culture in Paris. Ever since 1971, this has been an invaluable hub for the meeting between Swedish and French culture. As a representative of Sweden, in a family with French ancestry, there is always something special about visiting Paris and France.”
The Crown Princess continued: “I personally have several fond memories of various visits to the culture house in the picturesque Marais neighborhood. And I am not alone in that. Many Parisians and tourists visit the house every year to take part in exhibitions or maybe just enjoy Swedish pastries in the café. Through this Swedish presence in Paris, a special friendship has emerged, between all the people who met in the house, but above all between France and Sweden as cultural nations.”
Crown Princess Victoria concluded her statement by saying: “Behind the walls of the 16th century palace, Swedish and French writers, artists, musicians, dancers, academics, architects and other cultural practitioners have the opportunity to meet; there are personal ties that confirm and develop our countries’ long-lasting friendships; our amitié. It is my hope that the Swedish Institute in Paris can continue to build on that relationship, to the delight of many visitors and to the benefit of Swedish and French cultural life.”
Every year, more than 100,000 visitors get the opportunity to experience Swedish culture in various forms at the Swedish Institute in Paris. This makes the house one of the most visited foreign cultural institutes in the French capital. The activities include art, design and photo exhibitions, film screenings, concerts, seminars, a permanent art collection and a café. The Swedish Institute is thus a showcase for Swedish culture but also an important place for building relations between Sweden and France.