The new Copenhagen Concert Hall.


KONCERTHUSET – K3NC241HUS4T, via Flickr

This building, along with the national library (the so-called “Black Rock”), suggests that the Danes now have a thing for extra-interesting cultural monuments. The New York Times writes,

Like Frank Gehry’s 2003 Disney Hall in Los Angeles and Herzog & de Meuron’s Elbphilharmonie, now under construction in Hamburg, Germany, Mr. Nouvel’s new hall demonstrates that an intimate musical experience and boldly imaginative architecture need not be in conflict — they can actually reinforce each other….

Approached along the main road from the historic city, the hall’s cobalt blue exterior has a temporal, ghostly quality. Its translucent fabric skin is stretched over a structural frame of steel beams and tension cables that resembles scaffolding. During the day you can see figures moving about inside, as well as the vague outline of the performance space, its curved form embedded in a matrix of foyers and offices.

It is in darkness that the building comes fully to life. A montage of video images is projected across the cube’s fabric surface at night, transforming it into an enormous light box. Drifting across the cube’s surfaces, the images range from concert performers and their instruments to fragments of form and color.

This is the intoxicating medium of late-capitalist culture. You can easily imagine boxes of detergent or adult chat-line numbers finding their way into the mix.