The Arken Museum for Moderne Kunst is a modern and contemporary art museum located in Ishøj, 20 kilometers / 12 miles south of Copenhagen.
The Arken, opened in 1996, is housed in an iconic building on the Danish coastline, designed by architect Søren Robert Lund so to remember a beached ship (arken means ark in Danish).
The museum has been refurbished and expanded in 2008, increasing the total exhibition space to 54,000 square feet.
An ambitious plan to transform the Arken site into an “Island of Art”, completely surrounded by sea and accessible through bridges, was completed in January 2016. The new artificial island features a varied landscape which comprises lagoons, dunes, woods, over 20,000 native plants, and a sculpture park.
The Arken museum and the Art Island in January 2016; photos Thomas Mikkel Jensen, Ishøj Municipality
Plan of the Art Island, image: Møller & Grønborg
Aerial view of the museum, photo NIRAS
Main entrance of the museum; photo Henrik Jauert
The permanent collection of the museum is composed of around 400 pieces by international and Danish artists, mainly dating from the 1990s onward, including major works by Damien Hirst, Anselm Reyle, Ai Weiwei, Bill Viola, and Olafur Eliasson.
The Arken Museum also organizes temporary exhibitions, conferences, meetings, guided tours and educational activities aimed to both children and adults.
The museum building, fully accessible to physically impaired persons, includes a café-restaurant and a gift shop.
Interior views of the museum, photos Hanne Fuglbjerg, and Lars Skaaning
Ai Weiwei, Circle of Animals/Zodiac Heads, 2010; photo: Anders Sune Berg
Cover photo Henrik Jauert. All images courtesy of Arken Museum of Modern Art