Ny Carsberg Glytotek, Copenhagen

Today, I went to the downtown Copenhagen with Kirsten. We caught a train there since she told me that we don’t need strenuous cars to explore Copenhagen. We stopped at Central Station København (that is what they call their capital in Danish) and crossed the street to Ny Carsberg Glytotek.
Perhaps the only museum in the world built by a brewery, Glytotek was built by Carl Jacobsen of the Carlsberg Breweries (which is apparent in its name). The museum has only two things: old Greek, Roman and Etruscan statues, and French paintings.

You enter the museum and the first things you see are the sculptures by Rodin and other modern sculptors like Bissen and Jerichau. (There is even a room for religious icons around the corner.) The museum pamphlet says its Rodin collection is the most important collection outside France, but since Cantor Museum in Stanford, CA also claims thus, I was left confused. Rodin’s another replica of The Thinker stood outside the museum, but since I have seen at least four versions of it, I was more amused and intrigued by the bronze sculptures of Degas, which include his complete dancer series.

Ironically, the most famous room in the museum is its tropical Winter Garden at the centre of modern sculpture exhibits. In the middle stood nude The Water Mother (by Kai Nielsen) with babies which points upwards to the iron-dome of the museum. The Winter Garden leads to the Great Hall, which is usually used for public meetings and such gatherings. Around the Great Hall are exhibits of ancient cultures, from Egyptians to Greco-Roman. In fact, the museum is a stronghold of Etruscan and Roman art, housing various busts and heads of Roman Emperors.

The second floor and the new wing house various painters, the majority of whom were impressionists: Monet, Pissarro, Renoir, Degas and Cézanne. There were also David, Courbet, Manet, van Gogh, Gauguin, Toulouse-Lautrec and Bonnard. According to the brochure, the most famous paintings in the museum are Bissen’s Prince Paris with apple, and Manet’s The Absinth drinker. I also learnt something about Danish Golden Age of painting, housed in the new wing.


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