Cultural Achievements in Denmark

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Denmark’s rich intellectual heritage contributes to the cultural achievements of the modern world.

The astronomical discoveries of Tycho Brahe (1546-1601) and the brilliant contributions to atomic physics of Niels Bohr (1885-1962) indicate the range of Danish scientific achievement.

Tycho Brahe
Tycho Brahe

The fairy tales of Hans Christian Andersen (1805-75) the philosophical essays of Soren Kierkegaard (1813-55) and the short stories of Karen Blixen (penname Isak Dinesen 1885-1962) have earned international recognition as have the symphonies of Carl Nielsen (1865-1931).

Soren Kierkegaard
Soren Kierkegaard

Danish applied art and industrial design have won awards for excellence. The name of Georg Jensen (1866-1935) is known worldwide for outstanding modern design in silver and “Royal Copenhagen” is among the finest porcelains.

Georg Jensen
Georg Jensen

Visitors to Denmark will discover a wealth of cultural activity. The Royal Danish Ballet, an exceptional company, specializes in the work of the great Danish choreographer August Bournonville (1805-79). Danes have distinguished themselves as jazz musicians and the Copenhagen Jazz Festival has acquired an international reputation.

August Bournonville
August Bournonville

International collections of modern art enjoy unusually attractive settings at the Louisiana Museum north of Copenhagen and at the North Jutland Art Museum in Aalborg. The State Museum of Art and the Glyptotek both in Copenhagen contain treasures of Danish and international art.

The Glyptotek in Copenhagen
The Glyptotek in Copenhagen

The Museum of Applied Art and Industrial Design in Copenhagen exhibits the best in Danish design. The Royal Danish Porcelain Factory and Bing & Grondahl renowned for the quality of their porcelain and ceramics export their products worldwide. Ceramic designs by Bjorn Wiinblad also are well known and popular.

Art by Bjoern Wiinblad
Art by Bjoern Wiinblad

Among today’s Danish writers probably the most well-known to American readers is Peter Hoeg (Smilla’s Sense of Snow; Borderliners) and the most prolific is Klaus Rifbjerg – poet novelist, playwright and screenwriter. Benny Andersen writes poems short stories and music. Poems by both writers have been translated into English by the Curbstone Press.

Peter Hoeg. Photo: Poul Rasmussen
Peter Hoeg. Photo: Poul Rasmussen

Kirsten Thorup’s Baby, winner of the 1980 Pegasus Prize is printed in English by the University of Louisiana Press. The psychological thrillers of Anders Bodelsen also appear in English.

Kirsten Thorup
Kirsten Thorup

Suzanne Brogger and Vita Andersen focus largely on the changing roles of women in society. In music Hans Abrahamsen and Per Norgaard are the two most famous living composers. Hans Abrahamsen’s works have been performed by the National Symphony Orchestra in Washington DC.

Hans Abrahamsen
Hans Abrahamsen

Cultural Achievements in Denmark, compiled by Admin

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