The City is Our Living Room

Krøyers Plads, Nørreport Station, Nordhavn and Israels Plads. In almost next to no time, Dan Stubbergaard, co-founder of the architecture firm, COBE has put his unmistakable stamp on Copenhagen with a series of notable projects. In the exhibition, Our Urban Living Room at the Danish Architecture Centre, COBE invites visitors to experience the city from a new perspective: as an extended living room, in which the boundaries between private and public space are erased.


Photo: Rasmus Hjortshøj - COAST

A birthday party on Israels Plads, a workspace in the local library or an afternoon in the sun on
'Queen Louise's Bridge': as far as the architecture firm COBE is concerned, the city is our new
living room. Increasingly, we shift our everyday activities out into it and we feel at home there. In
Our Urban Living Room, COBE describes their vision and presents the ideas that have formed
the basis of their projects in Copenhagen over the past ten years.

"Today we use our city in a completely different way from how we did just twenty years ago. The
harbour has become the city's largest park, and bicycle culture is flourishing. The city's libraries
have changed from simply being places where you borrow books to places where students do a
whole day's work, families spend a Sunday morning and homeless people can read the daily
papers. The city has become our living room. Many of us living in Copenhagen do not have
huge apartments, so using the city as a place to spend time in and as an extension of our own
homes has become a natural part of life. Copenhagen has no major tourist attractions like the

Eiffel Tower or the Statue of Liberty. The main tourist attraction is the Little Mermaid, which is
one-and-a-half-metres high. Everyday life in Copenhagen has probably become the city's major
attraction. Our work at COBE has been about unearthing this and developing it: by building
wonderful everyday architecture, which gives more back to the city than it takes away. This
creates a setting for better, healthier, more social and even more attractive everyday living,"
says Dan Stubbergaard, architect and co-founder of COBE.

Step into a giant bookcase
The exhibition is constructed around a giant, wooden bookcase with models, images and "mini buildings", into which visitors can crawl, interacting with them, and feeling and listening to them. The idea of the bookcase is to create a flexible, multifunctional space. It can become a staircase, a narrow corridor and a large room, thereby also forming a spatial experience in its own right. Not to mention the fact, that a bookcase is also part of a living room. The bookcase provides the setting for eight rooms with different themes from COBE's work. These include: architecture for children; the transformation of old buildings; and a vision for the Copenhagen of tomorrow. 

"Right now, COBE and its architect/co-founder, Dan Stubbergaard are ones to watch -  particularly because they are helping to design the new Copenhagen. That is why we have  invited them to provide an insight into their work and their visions for diverse, social urban living.  Public spaces, buildings and urban plans guide us, knowingly or unknowingly, towards new  social contexts, and we want to pass on this understanding to visitors," says Tanya Lindkvist, DAC& LIFE Head of Programmes at the Danish Architecture Centre.

Copenhagen through COBE's eyes
At the exhibition, visitors will step into some of COBE's most significant projects in Copenhagen. These include Kids' City Christianshavn - the biggest day care centre and youth club in Denmark with space for 750 children, designed as a small, child-sized town with the likes of afire station, town hall and restaurant. You can also admire your reflection in the beautiful gold facade of the new rock music museum in Roskilde and step out onto a balcony from The Silo in Nordhavn. The latter will be installed on the facade of DAC during the run of the exhibition. You will also gain an insight into projects, which are going to shape Copenhagen in the future, but which are still at the drawing board stage. For example, in February COBE won the competition to design the conversion of the popular 'Paper Island'.

Discover architecture at close quarters
COBE are also based on 'Paper Island'. During the run of the exhibition, you are invited to visit them and continue your experience at the DAC exhibition. This will represent a bridge between DAC, COBE and what it is all about - the physical projects in the city. The exhibition will send visitors between the two locations and further around on Christianshavn for a close-up experience of COBE's various projects. As part of the exhibition, there will also be a series of events. For example, you can go on a tour of some of COBE's projects, and there will be guided walks every Sunday. Visitors will also be invited to contribute to a digital map, on which they can mark the best public spaces in the city for relaxing, throwing parties etc. - those places where the city turns into an extended living room.

The exhibition, Our Urban Living Room has been curated and designed by COBE and the Danish Architecture Centre. The exhibition is supported by Realdania. In connection with the 3/3 exhibition, COBE will be publishing their first book with the same title as the exhibition. It is an Arvinius+Orfeus Publishing publication. 

About the exhibition
Our Urban Living Room opens on Culture Night on 14 October 2016 and runs until 5 January 2017. Admission: DKK 60. The exhibition will be presented at both the Danish Architecture Centre, Strandgade 27B, 1401 Copenhagen K and at COBE, Trangravsvej 6, 1436 Copenhagen K

>> Read more about the exhibition

About COBE
Dan Stubbergaard was a co-founder of the architecture firm, COBE in 2006. In just ten years, COBE have succeeded in making their name as a trendsetting practice with great understanding of architecture's function as a social engine. The practice's projects are rooted in the special potential of each place. They insist on creating increased value for future users and a project's immediate environment. The practice's most significant projects include: the New Nørreport Station - the busiest station in Copenhagen; the planning of Nordhavn in Copenhagen - currently the biggest urban development project in Scandinavia; a new iconic building for Adidas at the sports brand's headquarters in Germany; Denmark's new rock music museum in Roskilde; and the development of 'Paper Island' in Copenhagen.

Press photos
You are free to use the photos in the context of any coverage of the exhibition, Our Urban Living Room. See the credits in the names of the files.

>> Find and download press photos


For further information contact:
Kristina Neel Jakobsen, Project Manager
Mobile: +45 2365 4045

Stine Lund Hansen, Director of Business Development and Communications
Mobile: +45 2729 2442

Tuesday, September 13, 2016 / By Kristina Neel Jakobsen

Last updated Tuesday, September 13, 2016