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Scan Magazine | Special Theme | Nordic Architecture Denmark
with the building and honour its history before adding your own artistic expression.” Keeping a structure’s cultural heritage in focus works well with modern projects too. The team recently redesigned an area popular with new immigrants and took inspiration from what already worked within the neighbourhood. The resulting design was developed around the idea of allotment gardens, helping to encourage an open, social, communal complex to encourage integration. “We work from an idea we call the ‘acknowledgement principle’,” Bertelsen explains, “we must balance three elements at all times: the client’s wishes, the Agency for Culture’s specifications, and the structure’s original plan.” Teamwork is vital, and it is an aspect of their industry that Bertelsen and Scheving particularly enjoy. When the owner of a private historical property approaches them with modern changes in mind, they almost always manage to realise them together, though it sometimes happens slightly differently than first planned to ensure historical integrity. Ideal functionality One of the company’s recent high-profile cases was the transformation of an old publishing warehouse into a new campus for the Copenhagen School of Design and Technology (KEA). The owners, renters and Bertelsen worked together to adapt the building to modern life, basing their design on modern education research. The result was a light, open building with semi-private areas for teaching, all optimally suited for Internet collaboration and modern work methods. “Wi-Fi was actually the saviour of historical buildings,” Bertelsen adds, “modern life is cable-free and adaptable, and so we don’t have to damage the feel of a place to get ideal functionality.” You can currently see Bertelsen & Scheving’s work in progress at Copenhagen’s Folketeater (the People’s Theatre), where they’re redesigning the foyer to make it more spacious and welcoming. “We’re working to maintain the original concept –
The savannah animals, like everyone else, are happy with their new home at Knuthenborg Safari Park
it should be an extraordinary experience to see a play here, but it’s important that this is the People’s Theatre, not the Royal Theatre. Everyone should feel comfortable visiting.” Another – very different – recent project took place at Knuthenborg Safari Park, where Bertelsen & Scheving designed the savannah animals’ new indoor area. “It was great fun to work with animals, actually,” says Bertelsen, “they
give such honest, immediate opinions.” The giraffes in particular enjoyed the new high ceilings. “In fact, they liked it so much that one of them became pregnant almost immediately.” There can be no higher praise than that.
Bertelsen & Scheving helped on the works at Christiansborg, resulting in a new tower restaurant and an updated entrance to the old ruins.
The façade of KEA’s building facing Nørrebrogade before reconstruction.
For more information, please visit: www.bsarkitekter.dk
Today, the KEA buildings present a light and friendly social atmosphere fit for modern studying, and the buildings have become a living part of Nørrebros cosy streets and plazas.
Issue 69 | October 2014 | 47
Promoting Brand Scandinavia. Featuring interview with actress Signe Egholm Olsen.