Friday, July 31, 2009

Home little home

Near yesterdays graffiti door is this piece of "authorized" (I think) drawing inside a gateway. This kind of decoration seems to deter other more "free-spirited" individuals from making their own.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Number 90

I've shown you some nice doors and ways to show which number you've reached on the street. This one I found on Vesterbrogade in an area of the city that until recently wasn't somewhere to bring you're mother-in-law from the countryside. Now much of the area has been renovated, but as can be seen on this photo there's still room for improvement.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Copenhagen Eye

Remember Palace Theater from my post Need a colour? It's fresh colours can be a bit difficult to see at the moment as a new addition to life in Copenhagen has taken root next to it; a giant ferris wheel. With its 50 meters height, this one is not nearly as big as London Eye (which is 135 m high), but it is the biggest of its kind in Scandinavia. The premiere was pushed from last week to Monday because the permission from the municipality was delayed. The engineers were worried about the soil underneath. They weren't quite sure that it could support the heavy construction, but luckily new samples of the soil showed that it should be strong enough. Well, it wouldn't have been good if it suddenly keeled over into either the Palace Theater or the Circus Building:-)

The ferris wheel is operated by Great City Attractions, who also runs London Eye among others. The agreement is for three months and then the municipality will decide if it should be dismantled or kept running for six months.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Call the police

Yesterday's photo was of an alarm phone for the police and here it is with two more of its kind. They were placed around the streets and made it possible for the policemen on patrol to talk with their precinct. When the radio car came they were obsolete.

Monday, July 27, 2009

What is this?

Right next to the advertising pillar from yesterday you can find this peculiar stand. But what is it? I'll give you a hint; it's from before the mobile phone and the handheld radio. I'll give you the answer tomorrow along with some more examples of this feature.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Really old adds

In Absalonsgade (Absolon's Street) is a very old advertising pillar complete with at least 50 years old adds. That is not because the people who service this one have neglected it. This part of the street is part of the Museum Street of the Copenhagen City Museum and they have renovated the street with the original pavement, gutters and street accessories.

So no, you can't get the Illustrated Family Journal for 10 øre (1 cent) anymore, sorry. Tomorrow I'll show you more from this street.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Christmas in July

When crossing the City House Square in Copenhagen the other day, I was almost convinced that I needed either some glasses or to lie down for a while, because in the middle of the summer heat was a large gathering of...Santa Clauses in many shapes and sizes, Elfs, Santa's Wife(s) and a lonely policeman in a very old Danish uniform. No, my eyes didn't deceive me and I wasn't dizzy (or had had too much to drink). It was only the meeting point of the World Congress of Santa Clause's held annually in Copenhagen in July since the 1963.

Traditional Elf with reindeer

Not all was in Coca Cola colours

After this meeting they went by bicycle to Dyrehavsbakken, an amuzement park from 1583, and the World's oldest operating, lying just north of Copenhagen. On Bakken the Santa gathering went on for three days with lots of fun among hundreds of Santas from all over the world.

They came in all sizes:-)

Friday, July 24, 2009

A shame

Sometimes the makers of graffiti do something really stupid like the paint on this statue of Mahatma Gandhi. They probably thought that adding some "lipstick" and "eyeliner" was funny but in reality it is shear vandalism. Why do some people think that it's quite ok to paint on anything that meets their eyes?

Thursday, July 23, 2009

A Neat Rhino

As mentioned in an earlier post I'm not a big fan of "unauthorized" graffiti. Some owners have surrendered their walls though, maybe out of the philosophy that it'll get a dose of nightly paint whatever they do, and given the wall to some worthy talent. This one is from a wall around a junk yard in the South Harbour area and I actually find it quite neat. The heaps of used cars stacked on the other side of the wall is another matter...

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

What to do with posters

Like many other cities Copenhagen have a kind of poster mafia; in the middle of the night these unknown people put up posters on any available surface in the city. Some of the places are legal, but many are not. They use wooden fences, condemned walls and these advertising pillars. If you look closer at the posters on this one, you'll find one about the exhibition of signs I told you about in the post In English please. This pillar I found in my local area of Valby.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Forest of signs

Industrial harbour areas are seldom beautiful and Copenhagens Nordhavn (North Habour) is no exception. This road run along it and is a veritable forest of signs. Many cruise ships arrive near here so it might not be the best first impression they get. Hopefully they hop on the nearest bus to visit the city center.

Monday, July 20, 2009

How to uglify

How to uglify: Find a nice wall, preferable with some nice details on, and start attacking it with a spray can. This is a real problem not only in Copenhagen but everywhere I've been. I might, and that is a big might, forgive it if the graffiti was beautiful, or at least could be seen as such by someone, but when it's only tagging I feel my blood pressure starting to rise to dangerous levels. And I have some trouble seeing the great in someone who in the middle of the night looks at a wall, that they don't own, and decides that this wall should have their signature on it. A kind of medieval punishment for this would be nice, maybe a day or two in pillory at the nearest square with the spectators given spray cans of their own to use on the offender?

Sunday, July 19, 2009


The people of Copenhagen do a great job when trying to beautify the city, but sometimes they should have taken a different approach. A couple of roses are normally a good idea, but in this case the owners should have cleaned their wall instead!

Saturday, July 18, 2009


Not all details in the city can be called beautiful. Some of the details, like these chimneys in a backyard, could have been done more elegantly, but out of sight, out of mind seems to be the order of the day here.

Friday, July 17, 2009

A pottery maker?

This nice old sign I found in Christianshavn on one of the old buildings there. I'm not sure, but I think it might have been the sign of a pottery maker; the elephant is often used as a symbol for work and it looks like a oven for pottery on its back. Or maybe the builder just liked this sign. Today it's a residence.

Thursday, July 16, 2009


This ramp to a parking garage has been camouflaged by a roof of roses. A really nice idea. I found it not long from yesterday's gas lamp.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Gas Lamp

This old street lamp is one of the first gas lamps in Copenhagen. Constructed in 1858 by Cochrane & Co for the Copenhagen Gas & Water Works, it was later converted to electricity. It stands right outside the Church of Jerusalem near the old quarter of Nyboder.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Number 41

There are many ways of showing the number of your house. Some numbers are dull and others are more elaborate. This one is one of the finest I've seen in Copenhagen. It's from an apartment block in Frederiksstaden and it's a painting on tiles. Very nice indeed!

Monday, July 13, 2009


In Denmark mailboxes are not exactly hidden. They are very red and placed in prominent places, so it's easy finding one. The symbol on top of it is a signal horn used by the old coaches to tell the way stations to ready the new horses, so the tired ones could be changed. The crown of course tells that this was a Royal service going back to King Christian IV, who founded it in 1624. The colours, red and yellow, are the colours of the House of Oldenburg, the family from which the Danish kings since Christian I (1448) have come from. Today the postal service is a semi-private company, partly owned by the state. From next year it'll merge with the Swedish postal service under the name Posten Norden. I wonder if they'll change colours and symbols then?

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Number 42A

On Frederiksberg Allé, where I showed you a water sprout, I also found this door. Doors in this area tend to be very stylish with intricate stone carvings, carved wood and many colours.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Real roses

Yesterdays post showed a door with flowers in stone, but today's door from Christianshavn in Copenhagen is decorated with real roses. In this area of Copenhagen the natural look is in; flowers and plants decorate not only doors but windows, walls and sidewalk as well.

Friday, July 10, 2009

A blue door and roses above

Many of the older doors and doorways in Copenhagen are quite beautiful, even when in poor condition. This one found near Godthåbsvej on Frederiksberg only needs some blue paint and then it'll be marvelous.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

A swan in stone

At Copenhagen Central Station (Hovedbanegården) there is a lot of original details, many of them hidden from view by more modern appliances. This swan above the Copenhagen coat of arms is a good example of this. Most travelers fail to see and appreciate these beautiful details in the morning rush.

The building is from 1911 and connected to most of the S-train lines, the intercity lines, the regional lines and the international lines, making this the biggest train hub in Denmark. There is no connection to the Metro-line here though, but that'll happen in 2017, when the Cityline is completed.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009


On Sluseholmen across from yesterday's submarine I saw these rusty looking things; a litter bin and a bench. My first reaction was that a rusty bench wasn't such a great idea (white trousers and rust do not match!), but on closer examination I noticed that the top of the bench was actually wood painted in a rusty red to match the bin. I wonder what the life span for the bin is, what with the wet salty air here.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

A U-boat on dry land

Walking on Teglholmen to take photos of my modern building theme I did a double take; suddenly I saw what looked a lot like a miniature WWII German submarine standing on pallets on dry land. The submarine is called Kraka and was build in 2005 by inventors Peter Madsen and Claus Nørregård, and it's 12 m long and weighs 5300kg. Price: 30.000Euro. They have later designed a larger submarine called Nautilus. At this tip of Teglholmen there is yet room to develop, so it's used as a junkyard and a place to leave half sunken ships and houseboats.

In the background of the second photo you might notice the Metropolis building I've shown in an earlier post.