a web series about the swedish fika culture


fika: to have coffee is a six-part web documentary series about the popular Swedish ritual called fika.

My name is Fabian Schmid, I'm the creator of the series. Now you might guess I'm Swedish, which is sort of close, but not quite correct. I'm from Switzerland, the other Sweden. And I study Cast / Audiovisual Media at Zurich University of the Arts. So how come I made a documentary about this very Swedish thing?

Throughout the last few years I have developed an interest in Swedish culture and day-to-day life. After some (road)trips to various places in Sweden, I ended up spending one semester of my studies in Gothenburg in 2015, studying photography at Valand Academy. It didn't take long until I – a passionate coffee drinker and self-proclaimed foodie – was introduced to the concept of fika and learned to enjoy and love this small but essential part of Swedish everyday culture.

A few months ago, the time came for me to decide on a topic and come up with a concept for my final project to finish my studies. Somehow, I combined many of my interests and ended up with this project.

A year after I went to Gothenburg to study, I returned to various Swedish cities to make a web series about fika – and about the stories the popular ritual writes. Over the course of three weeks, I visited some of my favorite cafés I knew from my time in Sweden as well as some new ones. I talked to many people about the essence and concept of fika, about their relation to it, and about the stories they had to tell about it. The result is a six-part web series available for free to everyone.

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The series is now available on Sweden's YouTube channel as well.