The Danish Jewish Museum is dedicated to the unique history of Danish Jewish life in Denmark starting in the 17th Century. Located in one of the oldest parts of Copenhagen, the Museum is housed within in a 17th century structure built by King Christian the IV. SDL designed the museum’s new interior space while preserving the original building. Completed in 2003, the Danish Jewish Museum was recognized with an American Architect Award in 2005.
The Museum differs from all other European Jewish Museums because the Danish Jews were, by and large, saved from the Nazis by the efforts of their countrymen in 1943. This historical act of kindness, or “mitzvah” is the guiding concept of the Museum. The Hebrew word “mitzvah” means an obligation or a good deed which is symbolized in the form, structure and light of the Museum. Just as the experience of Danish Jews during the Holocaust is as a text within a text, the museum itself is a building within a building. The entire building has been conceived as an adventure, both physical and spiritual, in tracing the lineaments that reveal the intersection of different histories and aspects of Jewish Culture.