Copenhagen is well-known for its architectural gems, and the Royal Danish Library, also known as The Black Diamond (Den Sorte Diamant in Danish), is one of them.
The Black Diamond is a modern waterfront extension to the Library's old building on Slotsholmen in the city centre - right behind the Jewish Museum of Copenhagen. Its nickname - which is almost used as its 'real name' by everyone - you will more likely hear "I'm going to the Black Diamond" rather than "I'm going to the Royal Library", is due to its polished black granite cladding and irregular angles.
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The building was designed by Danish architects Schmidt Hammer Lassen and was completed in 1999 as the first in a series of large-scale cultural buildings along Copenhagen's waterfront.
More than a library, the building is also a cultural centre proposing concerts, debates, writers' talks, exhibitions and more. The National Museum of Photography is also hosted there, as well as a very small space dedicated to cartoon art.
The Library hosts a surprising exhibition on its treasures... More on that in a next post.
In the podcast below you can hear former American ambassador in Copenhagen talk about the Black Diamond - this is part of a series of podcasts along the harbour, which you can listen via The Danish Architecture Centre's Soundcloud channel.