Architecture

 

The Carl-Henning Pedersen & Else Alfelt Museum was inaugurated in 1976 and originally consisted of a single circular building for exhibitions. In 1993, the museum was extended with a three-sided pyramid, and in 2015, an underground corridor was constructed, connecting the former shirt-factory Angligården to the other museum buildings.

 

The circular museum building was designed by C. F. Møller Architects, based on an idea by landscape architect C. Th. Sørensen. With its basic geometrical shape, the building coexists harmoniously with the pre-existing structures in Birk, which in 1976, when the museum  was established, included the circular sculpture park and the likewise circular Angli factory.

 

 

In 1992-93, an extension was added to the museum, rising like a magnificent mountain peak next to the original circular building. The extension is shaped like a three-sided prism, one side of which is made of glass, while the other two are covered with blue ceramic tiles, painted by Carl-Henning Pedersen himself. The exhibition space is situated underground and consists of a square gallery, connected to the original building by an underground passageway. The landmark of the museum is the 90-meter-long ceramic frieze by Carl-Henning Pedersen, covering the exterior wall of the building.

 

This monumental decoration, consisting of more than 1000 painted ceramic tiles, coheres beautifully with the ceramic decoration of the Angli courtyard, Imagination's Play around the Wheel of Life, painted by Carl-Henning Pedersen in 1966-1968. A third decorative work in enamel was created by the artist in 1990 for the Export School's new building in Birk. In 2003, the last of the artist's decoration projects in the Birk area could be seen when Carl-Henning Pedersen's tile-covered obelisk was unveiled in the roundabout close to the museum.

 

The architectural design of the Carl-Henning Pedersen & Else Alfelt Museum symbolizes the two artists. The circular main building and the painted ceramic decoration evoke Carl-Henning Pedersen's fantastic fairy-tale world, while the prism is a monumental symbol of Else Alfelt's love of soaring thoughts and stringent forms.