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Master of Light: Danish Architect Henning Larsen Dies at Age 87
Danish architect and founder of self-titled firm Henning Larsen Architects has died at his home in Copenhagen at the age of 87. Known as the “master of light”, Henning Larsen founded his architecture firm in 1959, and over the course of a long career oversaw a versatile array of projects including the luminous Harpa Concert Hall in Island, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs building in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, and the Malmo City Library in Sweden.
Henning Larsen Architects released a statement with a heartfelt conclusion: “Henning Larsen’s influence on architecture has been grand. He created a culture in the company that is driven by professional ambition and a desire to work with projects where architecture can make a difference. This is a heritage that we will carry with us.”
Larsen founded the award-winning practice in 1959 which is considered one of the most versatile architecture offices in the world. He was praised by the critics for his treatment of light and was considered one of Denmark’s most prolific architects. He became the first Dane to receive the prestigious Praemium Imperiale arts prize in 2012. From 1968 to 1995 he taught at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts in Copenhagen, where he himself once studied to become an architect.
His significance for architecture goes beyond his projects-he published the architectural journal Skala for more than 10 years. Some of the most recent projects Larsen was actively involved with include the Harpa Concert Hall and Conference Center in Reykjavik, Island. The luminous building, designed in collaboration with Olafur Eliasson, has a stunning multi-faceted glass facade which enables an abundance of natural light to penetrate the interior. Equipped with a unique system of LED lights, the building reflects Larsen’s interest in choreographing light and shadow to create dynamic spaces.
Henning Larsen Architects has five international offices in Copenhagen, Oslo, Munich, Riyadh and Istanbul and over 200 employees.
Lead Photo by Agnete Schlichtkrull
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