streetscape, building materials

Copenhagen Winter colour

At the end of last week I was cutting through Skydebanehaven, the park just west of the main railway station but tucked away between Istedgade and Vesterbrogade, and saw this stunning colour on the back of an apartment building. Partly the colour of the paint was much more obvious because the trees are still without their leaves and partly there was a dramatic contrast with the sharp green of the grass. There were dark grey rain clouds building up which changed the intensity of the light.

This deep red colour shading to a salmon pink is common throughout the city. This is a red oxide colour that fades over a period but also takes much of its character from the texture of the underlying irregularity of the brickwork or timber frame and plasterwork of the wall itself.

What these colours show is that the Danish sense of design is not actually, despite the reputation, about being conservative and subtle and safely tasteful … this is colour used with confidence and a real sense of style. 

Over the last day or so I have taken all these photographs for this post to show that in the winter, with the sun lower and light off dark clouds somehow sharper, the colours of the buildings in Copenhagen are richer and stronger.