Birthdays and art

We have just celebrated my mother’s birthday. Like always, it started in the traditional way, with special breakfast and a flag on the table.

Danes use the flag as a decorative item any chance we get. We even hang them on our Christmas tree. To outsiders this can appear quite nationalistic. It’s not. We just think our flag is very decorative and it thus goes up any chance we get.

Mom decided to invite the family to the art museum Louisiana for her birthday. It’s one of the largest private collections of modern art in the world and the space is amazing. Unlike many museums in Australia, you are not allowed to take pictures inside. And unlike many museums in Australia they sport custodians in just about every room. I didn’t feel up to the challenge and just enjoyed the exhibition, camera in pocket. There are three feature exhibitions at the moment: one on the women of the avant-garde, one featuring the artist Yael Bartana and one featuring the photographer Andreas Gursky. All of them good. The first two were very dark – that is, the walls were painted black and the lights were dimmed. I’m not sure the effect was optimal to tell you the truth. I had a need to run outside in between.

This is where Louisiana becomes special. Unlike most art museums it is situated in beautiful natural surroundings, which have been turned into a sculpture park. The visitors and the art mix and interact in a natural way, which completely removes the snobby nature of the sculptures.

As you can see, the park is stunning. In many places, the surroundings have been turned into sculptures in their own right.

Zooming in on the view, the coastline on the other side of the water is Sweden. I know the second photo is too small for you to see our neighbour, but trust me when I say that the view is incredible.

Less incredible is the fact that the large white building to the left in the first picture is a massive nuclear power plant, Barsebäk. Denmark is a nuclear free zone, but the Swedes have produced nuclear energy for decades. Barsebäk has created conflict with our neighbours since it was built, as an accident in the plant would impact all of Copenhagen. With the wind in the wrong direction, Copenhagen would become uninhabitable. I believe the Danish and Swedish governments reached an agreement some years ago to shut down the reactors one at a time, but the contaminated space is still a source of worry. Only the other day, it was on the Danish news that an accident had happened on the plant. This brings shutters down the spine of any Capital citizen.

But on moms birthday, I was content to enjoy the beautiful flowers and of course pay a visit to my pretend family relation, the man with whom I share an identical thumb, Cesar Baldaccini.


3 thoughts on “Birthdays and art

    • So do I 🙂
      And it is such a nice thing to do together – everyone reflects on something which brings out conversation.

      • It’s making me smile just thinking of your outing – it must have been wonderful. Wish I could tell Ma about it – she’d have loved your mother’s idea even more than I. 🙂

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