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Johan Bergmark – UNSUNG HEROES

Exhibition April 2022 – June 2022

I work a lot with portraying famous people. A typical day at work can mean 10 minutes in a hotel room with an actor or a musician. It’s very important to quickly create something that grabs the beholder. Hotels can be the location where I have taken the most portraits. I have a lovehate relationship with hotels. The vast majority are so incredibly ugly. They reek of hotels with their soulless paintings, yellow wallpaper border that always hits the head of an average length person. Lydmar is an exception. Ever since I took my first portraits of Quentin Tarantino at Lydmar in 1994 back in the days, it’s a place that has been close to my heart.

When the pandemic came in like a grasshopper swarm, the culture, the hotel and restaurant industry were hit hard. Maria Maruska and I talked over a coffee, and I suggested that we should pay tribute to the hardhit industry in some way. Maybe I could come by and portrait the staff – the actual heart and soul of the hotel – in the same way as if they were Hollywood icons or Rock stars.

All these photos were taken on and around Lydmar Hotel, during two years of ambivalent existence. Maria has been my producer and decided when and who to photograph. I have done exactly what I want with my “patients”. This assignment has been incredibly important and fun for me during this time. It’s like it replaced my “regular” hotel shoots. The exhibition is a tribute to all these people who work so that we can escape our everyday lives. When we treat ourselves to nights with caring people who serve us drinks, good food and wonderful sleep. In a really good hotel, everything is obvious. You do not see the staff, but the bed is always made, the room is clean, the drinks are on parade and the food is hot and tasty. Thanks to all these invisible heroes now hanging on the walls, we can step back into this luxurious universe.

Johan Bergmark

Johan Bergmark

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