Permanent Collection - Louisiana Museum of Modern Art

Every museum naturally has its own history and develops in its own special way. Louisiana opened in 1958 with a collection of modern Danish art. The original idea was to establish an interplay between visual art, architecture and landscape and in so doing create an unmistakably Danish setting and a haven for people with a serious interest in contemporary art.

The Starting-Point
The Louisiana Collection takes its starting-point in the years just after the Second World War. At this time Danish artists like Robert Jacobsen and Richard Mortensen moved to Paris and came into contact with congenial sculptors and painters who are now represented at Louisiana, e.g. Vasarely, Herbin, Dewasne, Albers, Soto and other artists close to Constructivism such as Gabo, Bill, Rickey and Calder.

Art of the 60s, 70s and 80s
The art of the 60s embraces on the one hand Nouveau réalisme represented by Arman, Tinguely, César, and Raysse and on the other hand pop art, which can be seen in works by Lichtenstein, Rauschenberg, Warhol, Dine, Oldenburg and Hamilton, who in a joint show give an impression - albeit fragmentary - of the most vital movement of this decade. Nine large and four small works (most of them donated by Marcella Louis Brenner) enable us to demonstrate more satisfactorily pictures by Noland, Kelly and Stella. We have works by several of the artists who made their names during the 60s and succeeded in creating rich and varied oeuvres during the next decade, including Beuys, Kienholz, Merz, Richter, Ryman, Long, Lewitt, Tuttle and Jenney. Chronologically, these are followed by Danes such as Kirkeby and Nørgaard, the Austrian painter Rainer and American artists such as Singer, Hunt, Scott Burton, Fischl, Salle, Serra and Shapiro, et al. To these have been added works by German artists such as Penck, Immendorf, Baselitz and Kiefer, and the Italians Cucchi and Paladino. In this way artists who had their breakthrough in the 70s and early 80s are also represented. Rooms for so-called “installations” created by some of the above-mentioned artists have been established in the museum’s South Wing, and our Graphics Wing holds a fine representation of the 90s art with works by i.a. Mona Hatoum, Pipilotti Rist, Paul McCarthy and Mike Kelley.

The Sculpture Collection
The Louisiana Museum possesses a considerable collection of sculpture from this century. Probably the strongest focal point in this collection is formed by thirteen of Giacometti’s works, including a group of “Venetian Women”, all placed on the same podium, and in the room below three works, which Giacometti himself wished to be exhibited together: “Woman Standing”, “Man Walking”, and “The Big Head”. In addition to the sculptures presented within the museum galleries about 60 works are situated in the park, some of which have been placed so they relate to the buildings and are meant to be experienced primarily from within the museum, while others occupy their own particular space in the sculpture courtyards. Still others, which need more space around them, have been individually placed in the park in relation to trees, grass, or water, and they are by Jean Arp, Max Bill, Alexander Calder, Max Ernst, Henri Laurens, Joan Miró and Henry Moore.

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