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The balcony on the first floor of the house “Spurveskjul”

The balcony on the first floor of the house “Spurveskjul”

Hammershøi | 26.aug.2011

Site visit

Yesterday we were fortunate enough to be allowed to visit the current owner of the villa Spurveskjul “Sparrow’s Hideaway”) in Frederiksdal. The villa was designed by the artist Nicolai Abildgaard and built in 1805, and in the summer of 1911 Ida and Vilhelm Hammershøi rented the house for a few months. Their stay there gave rise to a number of enchanting paintings by Hammershøi. He was fascinated with the special mood and rooms you find in old houses and also entertained plans to buy the villa, but this idea was abandoned, presumably because of its poor condition at the time.

This photograph shows the balcony on the first floor where Hammershøi painted e.g. the double portrait of himself at the easel and Ida with her back turned to us. The painting was up for sale a few years ago and is now in private ownership.

Standing by the balcony today is like entering a time warp. The dense atmosphere of the room and the wealth of lines created by the many-paned windows and doors draw you back to a kind of "Hammershøi time".

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Updated: 26.aug.2014
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