HEART – Museum of Contemporary Art

HEART- Museum of Contemporary Art

The beating HEART of Herning


HEART – Herning Museum of Contemporary Art arose in the fertile borderlands where art and the business community meet. The museum was originally instigated and carried forward by the passionate art collector and shirt manufacturer Aage Damgaard (1917–91), who laid down the foundations of the museum’s collection as a result of his deep fascination with art and his collaboration with several artists of the age, including world-renowned conceptual artist Piero Manzoni. HEART was initially known as Herning Kunstmuseum – Herning Art Museum – and domiciled in Damgaard’s former shirt factory, the circular Angli Building, which is located opposite the present-day HEART building and next to the Carl-Henning Pedersen & Else Alfelt’s Museum. Herning Art Museum was founded in 1977 when Damgaard donated a large part of his personal art collection to the museum.

In 2009, HEART – Herning Museum of Contemporary Art became the modern art museum we see today. Acclaimed American architect Steven Holl designed a new building for the Herning Art Museum, inspired by Herning’s rich local industrial and artistic legacy and by the affectionate nickname often associated with Birk, ‘the white city’. The shape of the building deliberately evokes associations to draped shirts and trousers, laid on top of each other around the two ‘treasure chambers’; the exhibition spaces that house HEART’s priceless art collections. When casting the exterior, the entire façade was carefully shaped to create a surface reminiscent of textiles, and inside, the unique ceiling is shaped to convey an impression of draped, white canvas. When construction was complete in 2009, the Herning Art Museum put the finishing touch to its momentous transformation by changing its name to HEART – Herning Museum of Contemporary Art.

Home to the world’s largest collection of Piero Manzoni’s works, the museum has an overall focus on Danish and international conceptual and experimental contemporary art from around the 1930s onwards, but also embraces many other art forms and styles in modern art when staging exhibitions of paintings, sculpture, photography and more. HEART also houses Ensemble MidtVest, boasting a splendid a concert hall for performances, as well as an attractive café that offers brunch, coffee, cake, and delicious food, and of course an exciting shop with carefully curated gift ideas, books, and souvenirs. For this year’s biennale, on September 4th, Spencer Tunick will be making a live performance work at HEART Museum which invites anyone to participate and be part of a unique artwork’s creation. Click here to sign up.

For more information on HEART Museum of Contemporary Art click here.


Artists you can experience here


Socle du Monde Biennale 2021 is supported by: