Monday 24 June 2013

Den Sorte Diamant

Den Sorte Diamant, the Black Diamond, is the modern waterfront extension to the Royal Danish Library's old building on Slotsholhem in Copenhagen. The nickname refers to its polished black granite cladding and irregular angles. It was designed by architects Schmidt Hammer Lassen, was completed in 1999 and was the first in a series of large-scale cultural buildings along Copenhagen's waterfront.

The basic shape of the building is a box which leans to the left as seen from the harbour as well as towards the water. At the same time it expands slightly from the bottom and up and fron north to south, giving it a distorted, prismatic shape.

It is clad in black granite known as Absolute Black, which was mined in Zimbabwe and then cut and polished in Italy.

A broad, glazed 'crevasse' cleaves the facade into two,

 letting natural light into the 24m-high central atrium that cuts into the building

affording spectacular views of the waterfront.

Going up the travelator

you can get a full view of the inside of the building and the wave-like balconies.

On reaching the top you are faced with Per Kirkeby's ceiling painting

The Black Diamond is separated from the old building by the busy thoroughfare Christians Brygge which runs along the waterfront. Several skyways connect the main Black Diamond

with a second smaller glass extension

seen from the outside, here,

which in turn connects with the Royal Library


The entrance to

one of the reading rooms.

To finish off with some more  photographs of that glorious building from ground level

and the reflections the black granite affords

looking up

and again.

Anne-Marie Carl-Nielsen's Havfrue is outisde the building by the coffee bar

and on the side of the building this fabulous fountain

with a wooden bottom.

Across the water is this development of almost identical glass fronted buildings. I tried to find out what they are called,  but had no success. Having done some research, I think they might be The Cirkelbroen, but I am not sure at all.

They are very imposing  and the fact that they are almost identical adds to the effect.

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