Blått Stål (Blue Steel) – The history of the Stockholm commuter train


The book Blått Stål (Blue Steel) is a chronological unique story about graffiti culture in Stockholm on the commuter train. It is the most solid historical document that addressed the topic ever where a hundred painters, drivers, cleaners, security guards are heard to give the overall picture of three decades of this until today controversial culture. We got the chance to have a chat with one of the editors.

How did you get the idea to make the book and why is it only focused on the Stockholm commuter?
The last classic blue Stockholm commuter train was taken out of traffic and scrapped out during the spring 2011. All of us friends that made the book grew up on along the commuter-line on both the north and the south side for us it was no doubt that the book should be about these trains, in most medias the subways are raised to the sky’s Let me quote Dano in the book from his chapter “The subway are like schlager-music and the commuters are like heavy-metal!”


How many hours did you guys put into this project and would you still make the book if you knew before how much work it was?
We have been working on the book for two years time, all of us put in every hour possible, blood, sweat and tears!

The book not only feature interviews with the writers, you also interviewed some of people from “the other side”. How did you get in contact with them and why do you think they chose to participate in the book?
Through contacts, its a small pond, either if you are a writer, driver, buffer or from the vandal-squad we will find you!


Did you manage to get interview with all the people you wanted to include in the book or do you still have some favorites that you couldn’t get hold of?
We are very pleased about the result, I think its a impossible task to cover 100% of 30 years of train graffiti but this is our story about what happened and I think we covered it as good as possible.

Do you have a part in the book that you are extra happy with?
Looking back now when the book is finally finished I would have a hard time to point out a specific part, its a chronologic story and all the puzzle pieces are important for the whole picture, for us I think the possibility to bring out unpublished material and spread our whole story around the subject is the main goal.

The book is only available in Swedish, on our international readers behalf – will there be an English edition later?
Its our ambition and i hope Stockholm train graff still hot out there in Europe, first of all of us that busted our balls working on the book need a cold beer or two at the release party! The book will be released the 26th October, more info in Swedish over here

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