When the Danes some years ago toasted the impressive renovation and new extension of their most important museum, we could only hope they did so with beer, since the New Carlsberg Glyptotek was founded by the world-famous Carlsberg Brewery.
Bequeathed to the country a century ago by beer baron Carl Jacobsen (who also gave Copenhagen the statue of the Little Mermaid), the Glyptotek has grown to become northern Europe’s largest and most important repository of ancient statuary, and artifacts. It also owns an unrivaled collection of forty-nine works by Paul Gauguin (briefly married to a Dane), which now are on display in a dedicated room. The Glyptotek received the painting “Sailing Ship in the Moonlight”, an early painting by Paul Gauguin (1848-1903), as a gift from the New Carlsberg Foundation last summer.
Other areas display French and Danish masterworks by artists such as Manet, Monet, and Cézanne.
Adam by Rodin
The museum also houses the largest collection of Rodin sculptures outside of Paris, and one of only three complete sets of Degas bronzes. The airy 1996 wing, designed by the esteemed Danish architect Henning Larsen, was unveiled during Copenhagen’s successful stint as Cultural Capital of Europe.
Contemporary and cool, it holds its own against the museum’s two original late-19th-century and early-20th century buildings with their great skylit galleries, decorative moldings, painted panels, and richly tiled floors.
In the city’s highly civilized and perfectly stylized manner, the buildings are linked by a lovely glass-domed winter garden and attractive café for the weary of foot.
You find the New Carlsberg Glyptotek just across the street from the Tivoli Gardens. Entrance at Dantes Plads 7.
Written and photographed by Tor Kjølberg