Ah, Aarhus. You’ve been great.
With your cute little cobblestone streets, your cool women’s museums, and your excellent coffee stores. (Don’t know what I’m rambling on about? Hop along here for the post!)
On our recent weekend trip, the weather gods were kind to us on Saturday, allowing us to leisurely stroll the streets of Aarhus and relax in the sun.
Sunday, though, wasn’t as great.
It was pouring down, the sky was dark grey, and the ensuing thunderstorm would’ve made the Norse gods proud. Perfect conditions to duck into the colorful world of ARoS – Aarhus’ museum of modern art.
Inside the ten-story building, you’re greeted by this massive … I’m not sure what to call it … installation? Figure? Structure? In either case, it consists of fantasy-like, colorful pieces of fabric, oddly shaped globes and tentacles, and loads of twinkling lights. If this doesn’t brighten up a rainy day, I don’t know what will!
The cool thing about this giant sculpture is that, since it’s hanging in the middle of the building, you get to discover it from all different angles as you make your way through the museum, up the stairs, and along the walkways and bridges.
Currently, there’s a Triennial exhibition called “The Garden”, which examines the role of the garden and nature in the arts from different standpoints – philosophical, anthropological, scientific, cultural). It consists of three parts, delving into the past, present, and future of gardens and human interaction with it.
I especially loved the first part, “Past”, which examined gardens, landscaping, and man’s interaction with nature in different gardening styles, like the English Garden or the gardens of Versailles. There were also some gorgeous oil paintings.
As for their other exhibitions, we visited a funky installation about optical illusions, as well as the “No Man Is An Island” exhibit, featuring one of ARoS’ currently most famous art pieces: “Boy” by Ron Mueck.
There was a piece of participatory art in the shape of a Lamborghini that you were allowed to scratch (although apparently that was so popular that they had to stop it – damn!). The exhibit is about our humanity, and there are some incredibly touching aspects, such as the wall of signs the artist bought off of beggars in the streets of the world that actually brought me to tears.
From there, we ventured to the top of the building to the famous Rainbow Panorama by Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson, a circular walkway around in all colors of the rainbow, which is incredibly instagrammable, fun to walk, and gives you an amazing view of the city from above.
From the top, we made our way down to the basement, to take in the installation called “The 9 Spaces”, nine rooms designed by nine artists from around the world, featuring light art, video art, and installations.
Below is a snap from one of the rooms, a eerie view of a night club (or maybe even strip club) after hours, which is so accurate that you can almost feel your shoes sticking to the ground and detect the sweet smell of spilled alcohol.
If you ever visit Aarhus (which you should), ARoS should be quite high on your list. The Rainbow Panorama alone is worth a visit, as Instagram will tell you, but the rest of the exhibits are super interesting as well.
The museum is open from 10am-5pm every day (except Mondays), and until 10pm on Wednesdays. It’s just a short walk to the city center. Entrance is DKK 130 for adults.
Have you been to ARoS? What was your impression? Let me know in the comments!
ARoS Aarhus Art Museum | Aros Allé 2, 8000 Aarhus | aros.dk