By & Havn (CPH City & Port) is developing Nordhavn in Copenhagen, and as part of their ongoing decorations and local exhibitions, they contacted Copenhagen based artist Thomas Pålsson and asked him to paint a mural.

Mural at Copenhagen Nordhavn showing 100 years of the history of the port Mural at Copenhagen Nordhavn showing 100 years of the history of the port

Bringing out the history

Pålsson has a unique approach to every project he takes on. He’s driven by bringing history to life and letting his art tell local stories visually. Pålsson put in a lot of hours to the preplanning phase of the project, working with local historians to go through the archives and find original photos from the history of the port from the last century.

Mural at Copenhagen Nordhavn showing 100 years of the history of the port Mural at Copenhagen Nordhavn showing 100 years of the history of the port

The final mural is best described as a visual composition of photo material from the last 100 years of the history of the port with a special focus on select physical elements and occasions.

Mural at Copenhagen Nordhavn showing 100 years of the history of the port Mural at Copenhagen Nordhavn showing 100 years of the history of the port

Hours and hours of research

When approaching the task Pålsson gathered historical photographs and worked iteratively on multiple ideas until he came up with the final design. The mural is not a historically accurate representation of a certain point in time, but rather a collection of important events merged together, however, all the elements stem from the local photos. Pålsson chose this approach in order to convey as much storytelling as possible within the one frame.

Mural at Copenhagen Nordhavn showing 100 years of the history of the port Mural at Copenhagen Nordhavn showing 100 years of the history of the port


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