Architecture


The Danmarks Nationalbank building was designed by the Danish architect Arne Jacobsen (1902-1971). With this building, Arne Jacobsen left a monumental work that has earned him a place in international architectural history.
During his career, Arne Jacobsen created a large number of important buildings and designer products. He helped to shape a special architectural tradition characterised by very thorough work with both details and the overall impression.


 

Background
In 1870, Danmarks Nationalbank moved its domicile from Slotsholmen to Holmens Kanal, to a building designed for the purpose by the architect J. D. Herholdt. Despit​e several subsequent expansions, the physical premises had become too small after World War II, and larger facilities were needed. Given the tasks of Danmarks Nationalbank, it was deemed to be important to remain in a location close to the central government offices, and hence it was decided to include the rest of the block and to erect a new building.


 

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The competition
In 1961, Danmarks Nationalbank invited five prominent architects of that time to take part in a competition. The competition was to result in a solution whereby Danmarks Nationalbank's functions could be gathered in one place, taking into account its central location with the Old Stock Exchange, Holmens Church, Christiansborg Castle and various ministries as its neighbours.


 

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The winner project
A majority of jury members pointed to Arne Jacobsen's design as the winner project. This solution met the functional requirements of the bank, and at the same time the architectural idea seemed to work. Furthermore, the jury found that the concentration of functions in the tall wing facing Niels Juels Gade offered a number of advantages in terms of layout so that large parts of the complex, facing the historical buildings, could be kept lower.

Arne Jacobsen (1902-1971)

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