The Black Diamond – Den Sorte Diamant, Copenhagen

Søren Kierkegaards Plads 1, Copenhagen
Hovedstaden, Denmark
Phone: +45 33 47 47 47
closed on: Sundays and major holidays
Museum Type: Others, Photography / Cinema

The Black Diamond (Danish: Den Sorte Diamant) is a cultural center in Copenhagen, home of the Royal Library of Denmark, and of three museums: the National Museum of Photography, the Museum of Danish Cartoon Art, and the Danish Museum of Book.

Above: The Black Diamond from the southeast; photo by L. Lesnard (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0).

Architecture and location
The Black Diamond building was completed in 1999 as an extension to the historical building of the Royal Library, conceived in 1906 by architect Hans Jørgen Holm, located in the heart of Copenhagen and overlooking the city’s harbor.
Designed by Danish practice Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects, the 226,000 square foot extension houses six reading rooms of the library, the exhibition galleries of three museums, a 600-seat auditorium-concert hall, a cafe, a restaurant, a bookshop, workshops, and administration offices, and a roof terrace.

The center takes its name from the peculiar polished black granite cladding of the two main buildings which compose it. A large glazed atrium connects the two parts and accommodates most of the center’s public functions. The extension is linked to the old building through a glazed skywalk, decorated with a large abstract painting by renowned Danish artist Per Kirkeby.


Exterior view of the glazed walkway which connects the old building to the extension designed by Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects; photo by Bo Nielsen (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0).



The Black Diamond, exterior views from the south-west and west; photos by CTG/SF (CC BY-NC 2.0) and by Marco Zanferrari (CC BY-SA 2.0).

National Museum of Photography
The National Museum of Photography (Danish: Det Nationale Fotomuseum) is one of the most important European museums dedicated to photographic arts.
The museum’s collection, which comprises about 50,000 pieces dating from 1839 to the present, is divided into sections dedicated to Danish, and to international photography, and includes works by William Henry Fox Talbot, Roger Fenton, Cecil Beaton, Henri Cartier-Bresson, William Klein, Richard Avedon, David Goldblatt, Nan Goldin, Hiroshi Sugimoto, Andreas Gursky, Thomas Ruff, Candida Höfer, Paul Graham, Olafur Eliasson, and Shirana Shahbazi, among many others.
Works from the permanent collection are displayed on a rotational basis through thematic exhibitions; the museum also hosts special exhibitions and includes a documentation center and a study room.

Museum of Danish Cartoon Art
The Museum of Danish Cartoon Art (Museet for Dansk Bladtegning) presents comic strips and satirical drawings, created by Danish cartoonists from 1890 onward, to illustrate the political and social life of Denmark in the 20th and early 21st century, a period in which cartoons were published in popular national newspapers and magazines have played an important and peculiar role in Denmark’s culture. The museum holds a collection of over 150,000 original drawings by more than 200 cartoonists.

Danish Museum of Book
Through special exhibitions, the Danish Museum of Book (Denmark Bogmuseum) showcases some of the most significant and rarest pieces from the Royal Library collections. The collection, among the most important in Europe, includes about 4,500 incunabula, 1,000 Medieval manuscripts, 6,500 foreign books of the 16th century, 150 volumes printed on parchment, and 100,000 scientific books dating from the 1400s to 1900.

Along with permanent and temporary exhibitions, the Black Diamond hosts special events, concerts, educational classes and workshops, film screenings, theatrical performances, meetings, and conferences.

The Black Diamond, Copenhagen, interior 2

The Black Diamond, Copenhagen, interior 1

The Black Diamond, interior views; photos Susanne Nilsson (CC BY-SA 2.0).

The Black Diamond, Copenhagen

Photo News Oresund (CC BY 2.0).

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copyright Inexhibit 2022 - ISSN: 2283-5474