As an art historian, I have developed a passion for European Renaissance and Baroque architecture. The Classical balance, light reflecting, clean facades and Baroque pomp attract me to cities around Italy, Spain and France and even Brazil (Minas Gerais and Bahia). Never before had I experienced Germanic or Scandinavian red brick architecture as I was about to in Copenhagen.
I had done my research prior to visiting the city and the first thing that I noticed was the conservative nature to the architecture in the Latin Quarter (historical centre) of Copenhagen. Red brick combined itself with Renaissance, Baroque, Rococo, Neoclassicism and Neo Gothic (Grundtvig’s Church in Bispebjerg).
Church of the Holy Ghost
Hidden amongst the throngs of tourists in the Latin Quarter, sits the beautiful Church of the Holy Ghost (Helligaandskirken).
Saint Peter’s Church
Behind the Copenhagen Cathedral (which I shall mention in another post) on Skt. Peders Straede stands St. Peter’s Church (St. Petri Kirke). This church has seen a number of transformations from its original single nave plan of the 12th century through to the current 15th century plan and its stunning Baroque copper spire. The church is dedicated to the German speaking community in Copenhagen.
Copenhagen City Hall
I accidentally bumped into the Copenhagen City Hall whilst on my way to Christianshavn. The magnificent red brick building, built in the National Romantic style made such a sharp contrast to the blue of the sky that I thought it would pierce the depth above me.
Everyone kept telling me to to go to Christianshavn to see the hippie commune, to hang out surrounded by artists, students and bohemians alike. Though I appreciated Christianshavn, nothing could have hit me quite as hard as the Old Stock Exchange building as I crossed back over Knippelsbro. The Old Stock Exchange (Borsen) looks like something out of an old Fairy Tale. The copper dragon spire is like nothing I have ever seen in my life!
Of course there is far more red brick to be discovered in Copenhagen but I hope I’ve stirred your curiosity enough to pick up a map and take a walk in search of some of Copenhagen’s finest historical buildings.