The Small Swedish City Facing an Uncertain Future

German photographer Katrin Streicher explores the daily lives of a mining community in Kiruna, a city deep in northern Lapland threatened by a growing sinkhole that grows larger every day.

In my project Night Time Tremors, I explore Kiruna, a unique Swedish city in transition, north of the Arctic Circle. The city has developed over the last century in direct response to iron ore mining, the primary source of income in the area. Today, it now faces an uncertain future, in danger of being swallowed by the same giant industry upon which it was built. Iron is extracted from Kirunavaara Mountain via underground explosions that cause the earth to tremor every night. Each blast results in cracks and deformations in the landscape, with the force moving slowly but steadily towards the city of Kiruna.

For the past few years, there have been efforts to move large parts of the city, but it's a slow process which is influenced by a variety of factors. The citizens have become wary about their own future and the one of their city. Night Time Tremors captures a place where - both literally and figuratively - normalcy continues on the unsteady ground.

Words and Pictures by .


Katrin Streicher is a German photographer which explores the relationships between people, places, belonging and identity in her long-term documentary work. Based in Berlin, she studied in Munich and Berlin. She exhibits extensively internationally and was nominated for the Otto-Steinert-Preis and the Women Photograph Grant and received a grant from the VG Bild-Kunst. Find her on PHmuseum.


This feature is part of Story of the Week, a selection of relevant projects from our community handpicked by the PHmuseum curators.

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