Monday, June 17, 2013

Kronborg Castle, the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Deep Fried Pork

“Alas poor Yorrick...” yadda, yadda, yadda. Today we took the train up the coast to Helsingør to visit Kronborg Castle which sits on a bluff facing Sweden, and which was the model for Elsinore Castle in Will Shakespeare’s Hamlet although there was no indication that Will ever made it to Denmark. Go figure. The structure dates back to the Middle Ages when it was heavily fortified and the Danish kings could use it to control entrance into the Baltic Sea – don’t pay your shipping tax to pass through, prepare for canon fire. It was your typical castle-ish sort of place, I’ve seen them in France, I’ve seen

entrance to the courtyard
them in England, there’s only so much I can take of this Game of Thrones kind of atmosphere, so as the others were preparing to check out the battle casements in the lower level under the living quarters, I trotted back to the train station and made for the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, which I LOVED.

not a castle, just the train station in Helsingør
who doesn't love a Joan Miro?
 I thought the Louisiana was mostly a sculpture garden but there are extensive galleries inside as well, and what was displayed from the collection as well as the two temporary exhibits was fantastic. It reminded me very much of the DIA Foundation’s collection in Beacon, NY ( although it’s on a much smaller scale. The garden is terraced with sculptures on different levels, almost all of them involving a view of water or woods. It was raining when I walked from the train station to the museum, but not very hard, and it cleared just as I got to the museum. I walked around the sculpture garden for a while and then headed in to the main galleries to look at the museum’s collection, and then to the two special exhibitions. The first exhibition I viewed was by Tara Donovan and it was totally spectacular – ordinary materials sculpted to quite extraordinary outcomes; and then I wandered through the retrospective of Yoko Ono’s work. Yoko started out as a visual artist and then moved toward music, sound, performance, and conceptual art. There were videos, sculptures, writings, photographs, articles, and interactive pieces on display. Her philosophy is simple and her message is clear... peace, love, look around. A lot of it was wacky but nevertheless, I thought it was pretty moving.  
instantly recognizable as Alexander Calder
Tara Donovan - folded mylar filling a room

sheets of plastic
After the museum, I took the train back to Copenhagen, and then the S train back to Sølrod Strand and met up with the gang for dinner. We took the S train two more stops down the line to Køge and on Bo and Laila’s recommendation, had stegte flæske for dinner at a quaint little restaurant that was not on the tourist path. Stegte flæske is roasted pork which is then sliced and fried. It’s served with boiled new potatoes and a parsley cream sauce; The blood has just been flying through my arteries lately so I’m sure it was fine... You order the dish per person and it’s served family style and we determined that while we had ordered for four (the kids chose other dishes) the amount brought to our table easily could have served twelve. It’s a delicious dish though and totally traditional so we decided that eating a plate of deep fried sliced pork was justified in the name of cultural experience. 

scene of the crime...

order for four, get enough for twelve - pork - roasted, sliced, and deep fried
One serving. I wish I could say I didn't have seconds.

in Køge