Refugees tell their stories in Portraits of migration

The Swedish Institute launches ‘Portraits of migration’ on This is a collection of stories and photos of people who have come to Sweden as refugees, put together by photographer Alexander Mahmoud.

Portraits of migration introduces the reader to people from different parts of the world, those who came to Sweden recently and those who have lived here for many years. They all have one thing in common: they were forced to leave their home countries. Their stories are full of both hope and tragedy and provide a balanced picture of immigration and refugees. The project comprises both a physical and a digital exhibition.

Providing more perspectives

Every personal story on is also connected to relevant facts and/or statistics. In this way, Portraits of migration both tells the story of migration to Sweden and acts as a counterweight to some of the rumours and disinformation that is being spread about refugees. It is also a complement to Sweden and migration, a story that was launched on in 2015 and presents a historical overview of migration to and from Sweden.

Mona Loose, picture editor and project manager at SI, says: ‘There is a lot of information about Sweden and migration out there, both in international press and on social media. We hope that these photos and stories will contribute to a more nuanced narrative.’

Some of the stories from Portraits of migration are also part of the film by Moa Karlberg shown above.

Contacts at SI: