Saturday, 31 March 2012

Swing by Copenhagen on your way home.

Tivoli Park in the 1890s. It still looks like this.

Last fall I went to Copenhagen to visit my friend Anders. The metropolis is dotted with whimsical details like fountains based on characters from Hans Christen Andersen stories. As a city, it’s very clean, safe, bicycle-friendly, and laid-back.

We rode on a rickety old roller coaster in the Tivoli gardens, admired paintings in the Danish National Gallery, went dancing, and ate some vegan cake at a friendly squat party.

Here are a few ideas for your next trip to Copenhagen:


The Modbyen (Meatpacking district) is really fun for going out. On Friday night we went to Mesteren & Larlingen, and a little place called Jolene, where they were playing 50s and 60s music. On Saturday night Bakken is pretty lively and crowded with a house party vibe. They played a fun random mix of music to drink to, everything from the Rolling Stones to 90s dance to 2Pac.

For late night snacking, try the delicious pizza from La Foretta on Istegade Street.

I heard the best time to visit Copenhagen is during Distortion Fest in June.


Illums Bolighus is an expensive design emporium filled with gigantic sky blue wooden pepper mills and tangerine velvet sofas that cost $10,000. If you’re on a budget, pick up some beautiful glasses instead. It’s a great place to buy presents for a modernist.

Pede & Stuffer is a cool (but pricey) clothing boutique with carefully edited menswear and womenswear sections. They sell Acne angora sweaters, Isabel Marant dresses, Opening Ceremony pieces and Calvin Klein underwear. Klosterstræde 15, 1157.

Most shops seem to be closed on Sundays, and those that are open close around 4 pm.


If you’re a vegetarian you should visit Morgen Stedet in the commune Christiana.

There are numerous delicious places to get pastries. Anders took me to Andersen in the city center, which is run by Japanese owners. There is a mix of tasty treats, green tea sweet buns, and classic pastries. I recommend the cinnamon bun. Østerbrogade 103 , 2,100 Copenhagen

Copenhagen is also famous for delicious fish.


If you want to go to the pictures check out the independent cinema Gloria Biograf. Or if you’re in the mood for new art, visit Andersen’s Contemporary. More galleries can be found here.

If you venture out of Copenhagen to Aarhus this summer, there's a great exhibition on performance art featuring Marina Ambramovic's SSS and Lene Adler Petersen's The Female Christ, which captured the day she disrupted the Copenhagen Stock Exchange by walking in naked, as a feminist and political statement.

Performing Women is at The Aarhus Art Building from June 23-September 16, 2012.

Bjørn Nørgaard and Lene Adler Petersen, The Female Christ. 1970.

Thank you Anders and Anna for a fantastic time.

Thursday, 22 March 2012

mind scrape

Gerhard Richter, Bach (1) 1992, Oil on canvas

Gerhard Richter, 1990, Oil on canvas, The Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh

“Abstract painting illustrates nothing…allows ourselves to see the unseeable that has never been seen and indeed is not visible. This is not an artful game, it is a necessity: since everything unknown frightens us and fills us with hope at the same time, we take these images as a possible explanation of the unexplicable or at least a way of dealing with it. Thus paintings are all the better, the more beautiful, intelligent, crazy and extreme, the more clearly perceptible and the less they are decipherable metaphors for this incomprehensible reality.”
-Gerhard Richter, 1979.

Gerhard Richter, 1991, Oil on canvas

The retrospective exhibition Gerhard Richter: Panorama is on through May 13th 2012, at the Neue Nationalgalerie
in Berlin. You can read about upcoming exhibitions here.

Gerhard Richter, 1987, Oil on canvas