The Thorvaldsen Museum is a single-artist museum in Copenhagen
Copenhagen is the capital and largest city of Denmark, with an urban population of 1,199,224 and a metropolitan population of 1,930,260 . With the completion of the transnational Øresund Bridge in 2000, Copenhagen has become the centre of the increasingly integrating Øresund Region...
Denmark is a Scandinavian country in Northern Europe. The countries of Denmark and Greenland, as well as the Faroe Islands, constitute the Kingdom of Denmark . It is the southernmost of the Nordic countries, southwest of Sweden and south of Norway, and bordered to the south by Germany. Denmark...
, dedicated to the art
Art is the product or process of deliberately arranging items in a way that influences and affects one or more of the senses, emotions, and intellect....
of Danish neoclassicistic
Neoclassicism is the name given to Western movements in the decorative and visual arts, literature, theatre, music, and architecture that draw inspiration from the "classical" art and culture of Ancient Greece or Ancient Rome...
sculptor Bertel Thorvaldsen
Bertel Thorvaldsen was a Danish-Icelandic sculptor of international fame, who spent most of his life in Italy . Thorvaldsen was born in Copenhagen into a Danish/Icelandic family of humble means, and was accepted to the Royal Academy of Arts when he was eleven years old...
(1770-1844), who lived and worked in Rome
Rome is the capital of Italy and the country's largest and most populated city and comune, with over 2.7 million residents in . The city is located in the central-western portion of the Italian Peninsula, on the Tiber River within the Lazio region of Italy.Rome's history spans two and a half...
for most of his life (1796-1838). The museum is located on the small island of Slotsholmen
Slotsholmen is an island in the harbour of Copenhagen, Denmark, and part of Copenhagen Inner City. Bishop Absalon constructed the city's first castle on the island in 1166-67 at the site where Christiansborg Palace, the seat of the Danish Parliament lies today...
in central Copenhagen next to Christiansborg Palace
Christiansborg Palace, , on the islet of Slotsholmen in central Copenhagen, is the seat of the Folketing , the Danish Prime Minister's Office and the Danish Supreme Court...
. Designed by Michael Gottlieb Bindesbøll
Michael Gottlieb Bindesbøll
Michael Gottlieb Birckner Bindesbøll was a Danish architect active during the Danish Golden Age in the first half of the 19th century. Most known for his design of Thorvaldsens Museum in Copenhagen, he was a key figure in the stylistic shift in Danish architecture from late classicism to Historicism...
, the building was constructed from 1838-48 following a public collection of funds in 1837.
The buildingThe building is strongly inspired by antique Greek architecture and built around an inner courtyard where the artist is buried. It is particularly noteworthy for its unique use of colors both inside and outside. Every room in the museum has a unique ceiling decoration in the grotesque
The word grotesque comes from the same Latin root as "Grotto", meaning a small cave or hollow. The original meaning was restricted to an extravagant style of Ancient Roman decorative art rediscovered and then copied in Rome at the end of the 15th century...
style. The outside is adorned with a frieze
thumb|267px|Frieze of the [[Tower of the Winds]], AthensIn architecture the frieze is the wide central section part of an entablature and may be plain in the Ionic or Doric order, or decorated with bas-reliefs. Even when neither columns nor pilasters are expressed, on an astylar wall it lies upon...
depicting Thorvaldsen's homecoming from Rome in 1838 made by Jørgen Sonne.