Sydney has its famous opera at the harbor front - drawn by the architect Jørn Utzon. Aalborg has also its own masterpiece on its harbor front from the same Utzon: The Utzon center.
A significant source of inspiration for Jørn Utzon has been his experiences with building ships as a young man in Aalborg. His father, Aage Utzon, was an engineer on the shipyard in town and also a internationally recognized boat designer. Especially known was “spidsgatteren”, which excelled with its speed and prominent curves.
It was Jørn Utzon's close cooperation with his father concerning the development of boats and the daily inspection of ship hulls at the dry dock at Aalborg Værft, which later gave him the idiom and the required confidence to realize the enormous boat-like roof constructions on the Opera house in Sydney. His genius work with this particular build gives him - along with other works - an increasing international recognition.
With the increasing interest for Utzon's work, it seems only appropriate that the Utzon Center is built at the harbor front of his home town: Aalborg, in the midst of the maritime environment, which inspired his early development. It was the deep wish of Jørn Utzon that the Utzon Center was not made into a museum, but instead became an active and dynamic center for architecture, design and art.
It is therefore quite natural that the center was established in connection with the Institute for Architecture and Design at Aalborg University. In line with Jørn Utzon's humanistic approach to architecture, the Utzon Center is not constructed as a monumental building, but as a series of minor pavilions built around a limited courtyard, so you have the opportunity to be sheltered from the fjord wind, which Jørn Utzon remembers from his childhood.
The Utzon Center is not only a place for visitors in Aalborg, but helps define the city's identity in the same way as the Opera house in Sydney. And combined with KUNSTEN in Aalborg, they help place the city of Aalborg proudly on the architectural stage.
The Utzon Center
Phone no. +45 76905000