Danish design and architecture

Denmark is well known for its long tradition of quality modern furniture, high end traditional crafts, applied and industrial arts, cool architecture and innovative design. Especially the designers of the 1950’s paved the way and today Danish design and architecture, continuously evolving,is renowned all over the world.

Decades of Danish Modern
Designmuseum Danmark is the place to go if you wish to explore the history of Danish design up until today. Apart from the permanent exhibition, showing furniture and everyday objects by people like Arne Jacobsen, Hans Wegner, Børge Mogensen, and many others, the museum’s special exhibition Century of the Child is definitely worth a visit, both with and without children by your side. Every Sunday the museum offers free guided tours in English beginning at 2PM.

Design and Function
Another beloved Danish designer is architect Finn Juhl, famous for his design of the Trusteeship Council Chamber at the UN building in New York, and for his beautiful and functional furniture from the 1950s. Finn Juhl’s house, which opened its doors to the public in 2008, was built in 1942 and is now a permanent part of Ordrupgaard, an art museum located in a grand villa set in a park just north of Copenhagen. Finn Juhl’s former home is decorated with a collection of his own furniture, as well as Juhl’s personal collection of modern and applied art. Ordrupgaard was granted an extension in 2005, created by star architect Zaha Hadid. Inside this spectacular and beautiful piece of contemporary architecture it is a pleasure to enjoy a light lunch or homemade cake in the museum café.

The Birth of a New City District
As any big city in the world, Copenhagen is developing fast. Next to historical neighbourhoods, new ones are rising. Nordhavn is a new waterfront city district being built right now. When completed, Nordhavn will have room for 40.000 residents and an equal number of work places. Between huge cranes and lit up building sites, a new part of Copenhagen is coming to life.
Nordhavn is also home to Paustian, an exclusive design shop, and the showrooms of Gubi furniture design and fabric designers Kvadrat, as well as the auction house Bruun Rasmussen,
filled with collectible design and art, old and new, from all over the world. (paustian.dk / gubi.dk / kvadrat.dk / bruun-rasmussen.dk)

Home of Fashion
Copenhagen and Denmark are home to many great fashion designers, from the cool, Scandinavian simplicity of Bruuns Bazaar to the colourful bohemian style of Stine Goya, and the extravagant
and art-like design of Henrik Vibskov. When it comes to jewellery, you may already know of the silver ware of Georg Jensen and the charms of Pandora, but if you’re looking for lesser internationally
known Danish jewellery, visit Marianne Dulong’s exclusive shop just off Strøget, or the one man business, Handcrafted Cph, whose jewellery is very affordable. They all have shops available in
Copenhagen. (bruunsbazaar.com / stinegoya.com / henrikvibskov.com / georgjensen.com / pandora.net / mariannedulong.dk / handcraftedcph.dk)

Cool Nordic Architecture
If you’re into architecture and urban development, the Danish Architecture Centre is the place to go. The DAC is housed in an old warehouse building with a café overlooking the harbour and
well worth a visit all by itself. The next special exhibition opens June 19th showing that of course Denmark doesn’t stand alone when it comes to cool Nordic architecture. The exhibition is about
the Norwegian architect firm Snøhetta, who have designed some of the great architecture of our times, such as the magnificent opera house in Oslo and the expansion of the Museum of Modern
Art in San Francisco.

This article was published in the magazine Curator, june 2015

Share this page

Article by

Anne-Sofie Stampe