Anker Boye, Mayor of Odense speech 31. October 2016 in Hans Christian Andersen Museum in Odense
Anker Boye, Mayor of Odense
Today is truly a great day. On 2 April of this year we will be able to present to the outside world the winning project of the architectural competition for the new Hans Christian Andersen Museum in Odense, and for the first time reveal what Kengo Kuma’s great vision for Odense’s new attraction will actually look like.
We have already reached the point when we can confidently state that the vision will become reality, since we have successfully ensured the financing of the erection of this fantastic house on one of the most central locations in Andersen’s native city.
To get this far, there has aleady been a concept competition and subsequently a content competition. These have ensured that not only the exterior of the new Hans Christian Andersen Museum will be international in appearance but that the interior will be an attraction of international stature.
These two competitions were followed by an architectural competition where a field of recognised international architectural firms pitted their skills against each other to try and win the attractive assignment of lending their name to the project.
Odense is in the midst of a transformation process into a modern big city, with all that involves in particularly the cultural dimension, with the new Hans Christian Andersen Museum featuring as one of the city’s most sparkling jewels in the crown.
Right on our doorstep a completely new city precinct is being established, of which the new Hans Christian Andersen Museum will be a part, blending in with the fantastic surrounding architecture.
The transformation of the city will enable greater and more unified dissemination of Hans Christian Andersen’s fairytales, the story of his life, and an introduction to his great imaginativeness and human understanding that continue to inspire millions of people all over the world.
The city already attracts visitors from all corners of the globe. Almost 70 per cent of visitors today are international tourists. Like the Danish visitors to the museum, they are fascinated by his fairytales. But precisely the fairytale touch is lacking from the present museum, which concentrates on his personal biography. For that reason, one great wish is to create a new setting and a well-staged dissemination that does justice to his great fame and completely unique fairytale universe.
No other place in the world can combine Hans Christian Andersen’s fairytale universe with the importance and authenticity of Odense – the place of his birth, in the heart of the city where he grew up and found inspiration for his later fairytales.
As chairman of the jury of the project competition for the new Hans Christian Andersen Museum, it therefore also gives me great pleasure today to be able to state that we have succeeded in getting A.P Møller Fonden and Augustinus Fonden to co-fund this fantastic building, along with Odense Municipality.
We would like to express our great gratitude to you both. Without your active involvement and cooperation this project could not be realised. Odense, all of Denmark and large parts of the world will much appreciate this when the building has been completed.
Kilde: Odense Kommune