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The Andrée Expedition

The Polar Centre

An Arctic Adventure

Adventurous Arctic expeditions have been part of a western culture since the late 18th century. The Swedish engineer Salomon August Andrée excelled when he managed to convince a large number of people that he could cross the North Pole in a helium balloon in 1896. At The Polar Centre in Gränna, Sweden, MYT have created a new permanent exhibition that sets over two floors.

The exhibition is full of stories about the preparations, financial difficulties, French balloonists, front line technology, navigation and hard weather considerations. We developed the concept and designed the entire exhibition including the films and projections. Together with Bea Uusma we developed and designed an AR station visualizing the graphic map from the expedition on the island of Vitøya.

A Mad Idea

As it would only take six days and six nights, champagne glasses were packed to ensure the celebrations could be staged at arrival on the northern coast of Canada. The preparations were handled by Andrée and his associates Nils Strindberg and Knut Frænkel.

After leaving the Danish island the balloon was fatally disturbed by a wind gust and lost its ballast. It moved slowly, but in the wrong direction. After only 65 tumultuous hours the balloon stranded on the ice, and the three men were forced to start walking.

Intuitive Storytelling

The film introduces the visitors to the whole story. MYT wrote the script and produced the film using feature footage and original photos from Strindbergs camera. The 93 silver plate photos were re-discovered and have been restored by conservators. These photographs, together with the diary of Andrée, give an amazing insight into the hardships of the deadly walk on the ice, from wild encounters with polar bears, having to eat seal every day, to stomach aches.


Gränna, Sweden


The Polar Centre


2018 –


1000 m2



Monika Frelin



Hobi Jarne, Emil Gotthard, Nils Fridén


Emil Gotthard




MYT, The Polar Centre


The Polar Centre


Jari Telin, The Polar Centre


MYT, Textkultur


Oscar Nilsson


Erik Olsson



Expeditions Around the World

MYT and the museum collaborated with Spree to create a digital touch station about a number of Swedish polar expeditions over the years. The station is a geographical survey of expeditions to the Arctic and the Antarctic regions.

Digital design by Spree, station and set by MYT. Polarbears by the museum.

A Lot of Stuff

A tour through the museum is like a journey through the process inside Andrée. The first floor focuses on the initial story about the preparations. The expedition was set to work as a technical and inventory project, full of high aspirations and hopes. The museum holds a large number of items, we designed the space so all the selected objects were included in a full story, down to the smallest detail.

On the Ice

The lower floor is an open and generous space, film and photographs are dramatised and shown on large projection screens. 

Textile Treasures

Special clothing was produced for the expedition, including a water repellent silk dress. These unique objects were re-discovered in 1930, when the remains of the fatal expedition was found.


We designed a secluded and calm space for the textiles, which never have been on display before. These textiles were found on the expedition member´s bodies, and as torn and worn as they are, they appear particularly personal and moving. 

© 2020 by MYT Exhibition and Experience Design