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Writing is an Act of Love



On June 7 th 2005 an exhibition about H.C. Andersen´s writing was opened at Thorvaldsens Museum, Copenhagen.

The exhibition´s architecture is created to fit in three monumental halls of very different aspect, that is to say the entrance hall to Thorvaldsens Museum in Copenhagen, the Hall Ségur in the UNESCO headquarters in Paris and the reading room in the Bibliotheca Alexandrina, Alexandria.

The architecture supports the idea of creating a condensed, poetical space for these buildings, constructed around the jewel in the exhibition: the irreplaceable diary pages and almanacs.

The showcase with the manuscripts is almost four-metre-long and the glass of the showcase is a white-painted steel valance, cut out in a filigree pattern inspired by Andersen’s paper cuts. This steel valance looks as though it were “built entirely of fine porcelain” like the Emperor’s palace in the fairy tale The Nightingale.




Ten white-painted chairs have been created for the exhibition. Each chair has its own prominent reader of selected fairy tales and diary notes in nine different languages made possible by built in loud-speakers. The chair is the tool by means of which the exhibition tells its story. Here, the writing is transformed into a narrative read aloud. In one of the chair’s you will find a book with the texts that are being read. The chair can be folded up. Then it looks like The Flying Trunk.

Curator for the exhibition is Annesofie Becker, head of production Martin Christiansen, exhibition architects Alexander H. Damsbo and Henrik Ingemann Nielsen.

Källemo, known for its innovative furniture collection, got the honourable commission to be responsible for the production and carry through the project – the showcase, chairs and screens. The work has been going on since spring 2004 and has been both technical demanding and a challenge.

Källemo has also received the right to produce a limited edition of the chairs named after Denmark’s most famous person. The chair is a homage to Andersen.




The exhibition at Thorvaldsens Museum
will continue until August 21, 2005.
www.thorvaldsensmuseum.dk