When nature and culture collide
5 places to peruse a sculpture park safely outdoors
Photographs: Erin Gustafson
Text: Erin Gustafson
From forests to seascapes, Denmark has plenty of places to commune with nature. For me, when those serene settings offer some culture included, I'm a happy camper. And while we all wait for the myriad of amazing Danish museums to throw open their doors once more, we can still take in some art. With March days getting longer, make time to find and experience some impressive large scale sculpture outdoors.
Rudolph Tegner Museum & Statuepark
Museumsvej 19, 3120 Dronningmølle
Nestled in the heather laden hillocks of North Zealand, the Rudolph Tegner Museum and Statuepark is a gorgeous setting to experience art in nature. Pick up a coffee or hot chocolate to go as you stroll around the grounds to find the fifteen pieces by Danish artist Rudolph Tegner that are set around the landscape. Juniper trees rise above the rolling landscape like works of art themselves. Stroll through the adjacent Rusland forest for a superb day out in Denmark.
Nordmandsdalen | Fredensborg Palace
Slottet 1B, 3480 Fredensborg
The Valley of the Norsemen (or Nordmandsdalen in Danish) is placed in the part of the Fredensborg palace gardens open to the public year-round. A beautiful amphitheatre of terraced paths is lined with 70 sandstone sculptures in three concentric rings. The figures were commissioned by King Frederik V in 1764 and feature 60 Norwegian and 10 Faroese fishermen, bakers, teachers, sailors, shopkeepers, farmers, and more. Representing everyday people doing everyday jobs was a first for a royal garden. To find the sculptures, take Skipper Alle to the left of the Palace and then the first right into the park's open part.
Kragenæsvej 62, 4943 Lolland
A modern monolithic circle of sculptured stones by the sea, Dodekalitten is mesmerizing and unique. A work still in progress from artist Thomas Kadziola, each carved face stands 7-9 meters high, with plans for twelve in total. Take a seat on the sitting rocks around the forty-meter circle and absorb the accompanying electronic music as it plays daily. The artist hopes when the piece is complete "… is that the finished dodecahedron will stand as a kind of zodiac of life. The twelve insights into life."
TICKON | Tranekær Slotspark
Botofte Strandvej 4, 5953 Tranekær
Tranekær International Centre of Art and Nature, or TICKON, is a wonderful example of "land art." Here all of the compositions are made from natural organic materials within the landscape. As such, they evolve or degrade - depending on how you look at it - as they weather each year. The pieces are not restored as they rejoin the land, but instead, new sculptures built. A genuinely artful nature hunt on the beautiful island of Langeland.
Deep Forest Art Land | Skovsnogen
Sdr Ommevej, 6933 Kibæk
Located in a forest between Herning and Billund, Skovsnogen or Deep Forest Art Land takes you on a 3.5-kilometre journey through an art-filled forest. The project began in 2010 by visual artists René Schmit and Søren Taaning to encourage more engagement with nature. For a recommended donation of 20 DKK per person, you can meander the paths to find large scale public art, like the skovsnogen or forest snake. Open daily in March between 08.00 and 17.00, beginning in April open until 21.00.