Elin Manker (photo: Sven Johansson)

Elin Manker


Visa sidan på svenska
Works at Department of Culture and Aesthetics
Telephone 08-16 25 28
Visiting address Frescativägen 24
Room B 341
Postal address Institutionen för kultur och estetik 106 91 Stockholm

About me


Research interests: Hisory of design and craft, the relation between theory and practice witnhin the fields of design and craft, aesthetics, materiality, temporality

PhD in Art History, Stockholm University
MA in Aesthetics (Södertörn University)
Master of  Education in Visual Arts and Design (Konstfack University College of Arts, Crafts and Design)
BA in Art History (Stockholm University)


I am teaching courses at pregraduate level in Art History and at the Master Progam in Heritage Studies.


During spring 2020 I am working on a project financed by De Blindas Bokfond (The Fund Books for the Blind) in cooperation with Mälardalen University (The School of Innovation, Design and Engineering) to write a Swedish Design History aimed for the blind reader. The book will be translated into Braille and will be illustrated with tactile images by Annica Norberg.

In my doctoral thesis, Förlagd Form. Designkritik och designpraktik i Sverige 1860–1890 (Serialized Form. Design Criticism and Design Practice in Sweden 1860–1890), Gidlunds förlag 2019, I explored the interconnections between aesthetic theories, the production processes and commercial market of early-industrialised design in Sweden. Through a study where ornamental prints in illustrated journals, handbooks and price lists are my core agent, I can analyse how the engineers, the academics, the manufacturers, the house industry movement and the female emancipatory networks dealt with the new circumstance (in Sweden at time) that everyday life was shaped by commercial objects made within factories. The investigation declares 19th century eclecticism to be an element design acting through motif repertoires – a practise which was based on guild crafts methods blended with the collective processes of production-lines in manufactories, and which was simultaneously affected by the flourish of images in contemporary, modern society. A strong implication for the Swedish context was German aesthetics in its popularised form, here identified and described as a popular aesthetics



– Forthcoming, accepted article (peer-reviewed):
”Popular Aesthetics of the 19th Century. Ornamental Prints and Pattern Sheets as Actors for Popularization During the 1870s”, Jesús Mu­noZ Morcillo (ed.): Geneaology of Popular Science, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology

– Förlagd Form. Designkritik och designpraktik i Sverige 1860–1890 (Serialized Form. Design Criticism and Design Practice in Sweden 1860–1890), diss., Gidlunds förlag, Möklinta, 2019

– Please disturb!, pedagogical offprint for exhibition catalogue, The Swedish Society for Crafts and Design, 2005 (co-author)

– ”Det i flor stående Stockholm – en studie av två malmgårdsträdgårdar”, Bebyggelsehistorisk tidskrift nr 31-32:1996 (togehter with Maria Holmlund)

Conference Papers:

Confenrence Paper:
'Element Design. Ornamnetal Approach in Late Nineteenth Century Paraffin Lamp Manufacturing'. Copies, Classics & Traditions, Nordic Forum for Design History, Reykjavik, 2018.

Conference Paper (peer-reviewed):
'Popular Aesthetics of the 19th Century - A Concurrent Story to the History of Design, Investigated through an Analysis of Illustrations in the Periodical Press'. Genealogy of Popular Science, Karlsruher Institut für Technologie, 2018.

Poster Session:
'Aestethic Strategies of the North. Looking at design through 'popular aesthetics', Det nordiske 1800-tals forskningsnetvaerk: Netvaerksseminar 2017, Köpenhamn

Paper (peer-reviewed):
'How To Comprehend 19th Century Interiors? Comments on ANT and historic interior research'. The Nordic Association of Architectural Research Symposium 2016, Stockholm 

Last updated: May 10, 2020

Bookmark and share Tell a friend