Top Copenhagen Places: Travel Guide by Head of Code Art Fair | BLOUIN ARTINFO
Louise Blouin Media
Louise Blouin Media, Inc.
88 Laight Street
New York
Blouin Artinfo

Subscriber login

Articles Remaining

Get access to this story, and every story on any device with our Basic Digital subscription.

Subscribe for only $20 Log in

Top Copenhagen Places: Travel Guide by Head of Code Art Fair

Julie Leopold Alf, Head, Code Art Fair

In 2017, Code 2, the second edition of Code Art Fair will present works from leading as well as emerging galleries from all over the world, between August 31 and September 3 at Bella Center, Scandinavia’s largest exhibition center. The fair will also feature a curated film, talks and performance program called “ArtReacts”, designed to serve as a platform to discuss the cultural, intellectual, political, and economic forces currently shaping the contemporary art scene and market as well as our society as a whole.

Julie Leopold Alf, the Head of Code Art Fair, is a business lawyer by education, but got involved in developing fairs and concepts for fairs more than 15 years ago. The 46-year-old is also married to a gallery owner and art dealer. Blouin ARTINFO spoke to Alf about her personal favorites in Copenhagen:

What are your recommendations for must-visit places in Copenhagen and why?

Louisiana is a wonderful and peaceful location north of Copenhagen with fantastic collections and exciting exhibitions all around the year. The beautiful museum of Glyptoteket was established by Danish brewer Carl Jacobsen in 1882. The building and the baroque garden inside is a visit worth in itself. Furthermore, the museum houses a large collection of antique, Egyptian, Greek and modern art and the glass ceilinged garden is a small oasis in the middle of the city. I’d also recommend that you make a trip to the Paper Island, Copenhagen’s colorful street food market, The Royal Danish Opera House and Playhouse. Here, you can enjoy everything from gin cocktails to organic hotdogs.

What restaurants, bars, and cafes would you recommend in Copenhagen and why?

For a dinner and night out I personally love The Market for its fantastic sushi, great cocktails and festive environment in the middle of Copenhagen. Also Café Victor, which is an old school French café right next to Hotel D’Angleterre and Kongens Lyngby (Kgs). The crowd at Nytorv in central Copenhagen has literally grown with me. For a nice lunch the Copenhagen way, go to Atelier September at Gothersgade. Take your seat by one of the large windows facing the street and watch people watch you while you’re enjoying their famous avocado sandwich on rye bread. You will probably bump into someone from the art world. Or meet the cool crowd at The Union Kitchen in Strandstræde. Try out their huge selection of vegetable and meat balls in a cozy and cool atmosphere close to Nyhavn.

Where would you go and what would you do if you had a free morning or afternoon in Copenhagen?

I would take my kids to Kgs. Have a juice and sandwich from one of the sandwich places close to Rosenborg Castle Gardens. If the weather won’t allow it, I would go to the rooftop of Illum department store at Strøget (the walking street in central Copenhagen). Here we could start with a brunch with a beautiful view over Copenhagen. Then I would go to Thorvaldsen’s Museum. Another old building and museum from 1848, it’s actually the first official museum building in Denmark. Here, you can experience all the works from Danish sculptor, Bertel Thorvaldsen. The stunning tile floors, decorated ceilings and colorful walls make this place a true delight. After this, I would treat myself and the kids to a famous piece of ‘lagkage’ (traditional Danish birthday cake) at Conditori La Glace. This is both a local favourite and a tourist attraction – so you might find a queue. If the queue is too long, I would go to Bertels Salon in Kompagni Stræde and have a fantastic piece of cheesecake with a cup of tea. The newly opened Hermes store is also really nice and the area right behind Strøget is full of small shops and cafés.

Where would you head to in Copenhagen for the best shopping and what would you buy?

For clothes, I personally love international brands like Isabell Marant and Valentino, but Copenhagen’s streets are certainly home to several shops of awesome Danish designers. For more high-end designs carefully curated in multi-brand shops, I would go to Holly Go Lightly and Lot29. Illums Bolighus at Strøget offers several Danish designs and it’s just next to Royal Copenhagen’s beautiful store. For modern and vintage design furniture I would go to the streets close to Kgs.

Where would you recommend people stay (hotels etc.) when they visit Copenhagen?

Of course the award winning AC BellaSky Hotel. The view here is amazing and the new architectural area is very exciting. It’s just a few metro stops away from central Copenhagen. If you want to be accommodated as a royal, go for Hotel D’Angleterre at Kgs.

What are the best places to see and buy art in Copenhagen?

Copenhagen is not that big, which makes it a fantastic and easy city to visit. So if you stay in the area around Kongens Nytorv, which is the very center of the city, you will find all of Copenhagen’s leading galleries in streets like Bredgade and Holbergsgade.

What are the best places to see live bands or musicians in Copenhagen and why?

Vega would be a good choice in the neighborhood called Vesterbro. This quarter has grown popular for young, creative people. But Tivoli Gardens is also a personal favorite — it’s worth a visit no matter what! Copenhagen’s historical amusement park presents a free live concert by a famous artist every Friday during summertime, which is very popular.

What are the best spots for experiencing Copenhagen’s nightlife after spending the day at an art fair?

The Meatpacking District at Vesterbro, which used to be home to Copenhagen’s meat industry, is now the place to go for the hipsters, all day and night. Galleri K is a cozy and cheerful area for restaurants including The Market and here you always find a nice vibe for all ages. More traditional places would be Café Balthazar at Hotel D’Angleterre and Cafe Victor. In the same area you find Lusso and At Dolores for membership-based VIP clubbing. But the fancy traveler can always find a way in!

What are some interesting artworks that we can look forward to at Code Art Fair 2017?

It’s difficult to pick. Every gallery has done its absolute best. It’s very exciting to see all the presentations and artworks come together in our beautiful glass hall. But it will definitely be interesting to see the solo show of paintings by the talented but not so hyped artist Karl Horst Hödicke at König Galerie. Another Berlin gallery, Alexander Levy, presents Julius von Bismarck. The fair also includes artist-curated stands — one by the Paris based duo Claire Fontaine (Galerie Neu) and another by Danish Lone Haugaard Madsen (Nagel/Draxler). This brings an extra edge to the gallery stands and I believe it will be a great experience for the visitors. The first wonderful sight that one will be confronted with upon entering the venue is an installation of a huge ‘DræberGoble’ (killer goble) by Tue Greenfort hanging from the ceiling.

What projects are you currently working on/involved in?

It’s all about developing Code Art Fair! With all it takes and everything it includes of side projects. Code 3 is already in the making – and we have several events all over the world in 2017/2018. Next time in October at Chateau Marmont in Los Angeles, US.

Click here to view a slideshow of Copenhagen.