The Henning Larsen Foundation


A number of young Danish architects have been awarded grants. In 2007 and 2008, the Foundation organised international competitions in the fields of architectural photography and architectural drawing.

The objective of the non-profit and charitable Foundation is to support Danish architecture, e.g. through further training; travelling grants; exhibition activities; publication of books on architecture; development and implementation of information technology for architectural purposes and the awarding of grants - in acknowledgement of architects who have developed significant buildings or demonstrated other achievements of high quality.

The Foundation is a natural extension of Henning Larsen’s interest in promoting and disseminating architecture - in parallel to his work as an architect and his professorship at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts, School of Architecture. This interest is also reflected in the establishment of the SKALA architectural gallery and SKALA architecture magazine in the eighties.

The Board consists of:

    Architect Troels Troelsen (Chairman)
    CEO, architect Kent Martinussen, Danish Architecture Centre
    Architect Ingela Larsson Bente Scavenius
    MA Lone Backe
    Lawyer Niels Bang

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2012: Competition: TIME & SPACE – writing about architecture

2012: Competition: TIME & SPACE – writing about architecture

In February, the Henning Larsen Foundation launched an international competition for writing about architecture, "TIME & SPACE". 173 entries from 18 countries were submitted. The entries come from most countries in Europe, several countries in the Middle East, the US and Canada.

The many Danish and English texts represent a broad variety of genres - from short, poetic texts and essays to more academic papers.

The competition is the third in a row of architecture competitions held by the Henning Larsen Foundation. The first was about "photographing architecture", the second about "drawing architecture" and the third - "TIME & SPACE" - focuses on "writing about architecture".

Photos, drawings and texts challenge architecture. They can be a branch of art or a piece of architecture in themselves, or they can communicate an idea or a dream. The dream has been the focus of attention in this competition.

The jury has evaluated the submitted texts on the basis of their description of space and spatiality and whether they offer something new to the genre - writing about architecture.

On 20 August, the names of the winners are announced. The first prize winner receives an award of €10,000, the second prize winner of €5,000 and the three third prize winners of each €2,000.

1st prize
Nathan Romero Muelas, Charlottenlund, for the text "The Wash House".

2nd prize
Daniel Persson, Malmö, for the text "Snow/Tracing Paper".

3rd prizes

Sanne Flyvbjerg, Copenhagen, for the text "Patarei, Patarei, Patarei".
Mette Marie Kallehauge, Copenhagen, for the text "The architecture of text - the text of architecture".
Tinne Delfs, Åbyhøj, for the text "Time & Space".

Jury's statement
The jury consisted of Professor, architect Henning Larsen; CEO, architect Kent Martinussen; Chief Editor, architect Martin Keiding; architecture writer, historian of ideas Christian Bundegaard and architect Troels Troelsen.

About the winners, the jury writes:

"The Wash House" by Nathan Romero Muelas
"The Wash House" is a classic essay. A personal, experienced voice takes us back to a place that no longer exists but as a recollection still gives meaning. A place "from the time before the washing machine" which in the writer's description becomes the space of architecture par excellence, the place where people meet around an everyday function that would not exist without the physical framework provided by architecture. A simple space and a simple but captivating story about how time lets the space continue beyond its concrete existence by virtue of our memory. A place you passed but which stayed in your mind because the architecture and the everyday use were strong and full of meaning. As this essay itself: a small gem that unites everything important with simple means.
"Snow/Tracing Paper" by Daniel Persson
"Snow/Tracing Paper" uses a well-known analogy, the fresh snow seen as the writer's, the artist's white paper, but does it in an at the same time poetic, distinct and humorous way - observing how traces are created and mixed. Snow as sketching in text and fine images, diagrams of possible projects and at the same time drawings for what just disappears. A transitory architecture that reveals quite a lot about norms and individuality, about how our many other traces in life come into existence, are read and are gone again. Just as ourselves. Because we ourselves are small traces of passed time in spaces, which are here until "spring comes… and other birds sing different songs".

"Patarei, Patarei, Patarei" by Sanne Flyvbjerg
"Patarei" is an architectural report from a desolate prison outside Tallinn in Estonia. Attracted by the abandoned "places of the past", the writer shares what she calls "an altogether extraordinary space" with the reader. Sensuously, attentively and no little ghastly, the travel back in time is communicated through empty and deserted spaces, which are nonetheless filled with traces of the limited life, which probably never unfolded but simply lived here. And architecture, which comprises the past in its entire contrasting mixture of fascination and fear, inspires the writer - and us readers - to create architecture "that exists for the body and is not just beautiful in the visionary aesthetics".

"The architecture of text - the text of architecture" by Mette Marie Kallehauge
"The architecture of text - the text of architecture" brings together the act of writing with the act of drawing houses and looks into what the two can learn from each other. And it shows that "the human body is an archive" that survives through its memory, just as good architecture is dependent on the body's memory being able to find its way around it and feel at home in it. As the text passes in time when you write and read it, in the same way architecture must also find its spaces in humans' mental landscapes, and as the writer's philosophical and inventive analysis suggests, there is much to be dealt with. The dream house - which is both a concrete place and - precisely - a dream, is something that develops over time. In numerous kinds of crossings between then and now, here and there.

"Time & Space" by Tinne Delfs
"Time & Space" uses a painting by Vermeer to consider the relationship between the outer and the inner space, between the virtual and the concrete, physical world. Just as Vermeer's closet play shows us that the large dramas are concealed in everyday life, our imaginations about physical settings are combined with the concrete materials and spaces that architecture can make use of. This is a task, we understand, which requires a sense of contextual rhythm and the human pulse, of the "randomness and vagaries of weather and geography". As opposed to the virtual, graphic space of the computer where everything is possible, in the real world, it is literally uphill to build, to write - and to paint really well, as Vermeer could.

On 20 August, the Henning Larsen Foundation and Arkitektens Forlag publish

At skrive om arkitektur / Writing about architecture

The book presents the winning texts in Danish and English.

The book can be purchased in the nearest bookstore or at Arkitektens Forlag's website,

Editor: Martin Keiding
Foreword: Troels Troelsen
Graphic design: Per Henrik Skou

72 pages, 14.5 x 25 cm, hardback, the Henning Larsen Foundation & Arkitektens Forlag, 2012. Published with support from Henning Larsen Architects. ISBN 9788774074108. Price: DKK 245.

Former Award Winners

Former Award Winners

International competition for writing about architecture

1st Prize: Nathan Romero Muelas
2nd Prize: Daniel Persson
3rd Prize: Sanne Flyvbjerg
3rd Prize: Mette Marie Kallehauge
3rd Prize: Tinne Delfs

Journalist Henrik Sten Møller
Architect Kjeld Kjeldsen

Architectural photographer Jens Lindhe

Architect Theo Berg

International competition for architectural drawing

1st Prize: Robert Müller, Austria
2nd Prize: Julian Busch, Germany
3rd Prize: Julie Huang Jahn, Denmark
3rd Prize: Barnabas Wetton & Chris Thurlbourne, Denmark
3rd Prize: Clemens Helmke & Dorothée Billard, Germany

International architectural photography competition

2nd Prize: Michael Stefan Rathje-Sørensen, Denmark
2nd Prize: Ditz Fejer, Austria
3rd Prize: Nils Lund Pedersen, Denmark
Honorary mention: Lars Gundersen, Denmark
Honorary mention: Casper Balslev og Mads Nisssen, Denmark

Artist Jytte Rex

Studio Force4: Andreas Lauesen, Christian Dalsdorf, Maja Asaa and Mikala Holme Samsøe

Studio Kollision: Andreas Lykke-Olesen, Tobias Løssing and Rune Nielsen
Architect Kent Martinussen
Film director Nils Vest

Architect Julien De Smedt

Architect Dorte Mandrup-Poulsen
Architect Merete Ahnfeldt-Mollerup

Architect Bjarke Ingels


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