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Danish report Danish report
by Euro Reporter
2010-02-08 10:22:14
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Giacometti sculpture ‘L'Homme Qui Marche’

As of this week the value of the art at Louisiana Museum soared hundreds of millions of kroner. Specifically, the museum’s Alberto Giacometti sculpture ‘L'Homme Qui Marche’ (‘The walking man’) is now the world’s most expensive work of art, after the sculpture sold for a record £65 million at a Sotheby’s auction in London on Wednesday.  But the sculpture is only one of six editions made from the original cast by the Swiss artist, and there also exist four ‘proofs’ of the work.

One of those originals is owned by Louisiana, located on the northern Zealand coast just south of Helsingør. ‘L'Homme Qui Marche? Yes, we have one of those, too,’ the museum’s curator Poul Erik Tøjner, told Kristeligt Dagblad newspaper when he heard of the astronomical selling price. Tøjner was not especially moved by the news and, in fact, subtly criticised the way art auctions have become based almost entirely on the buyer’s desire for prestige.

‘It’s fun to watch them as a sort of capitalist theatre performance,’ he said. ‘Art auctions have become almost like an Olympic sport. But Wednesday’s sale price has nothing to do with our operation of the museum, other than meaning higher insurance rates when we lend out the works.’ In addition to ‘L'Homme Qui Marche’, the museum has one of Europe's two finest collections of Giacometti works, with 20 pieces in all, purchased from the artist's widow. Tøjner said he hoped that visitors do not come to Louisiana just because of the cost of the pieces, but rather to see good art. He acknowledged, however, that the record price would likely create new awareness about the Giacometti collection.
But Louisiana isn’t the only place in Denmark to see a genuine Giacometti. In 1966, then Holstebro mayor Kaj Nielsen made a controversial 210,000 kroner purchase from city funds to buy the ‘Woman with Chariot’ sculpture. That controversy has subsided, however, as the work is now valued at over 100 million kroner.


A policewoman’s error

A policewoman’s error in judgement has resulted in a spam mail that has flooded her office with public inquiries – for the second time. Last year, the unlucky constable with Mid and West Jutland Police inadvertently sent her digital signature out into cyberspace, and it was picked up by unknown scam artists. Since that time, two spam email ‘warnings’ about dangerous, virus-laden emails entitled 'POSTCARD FROM HALLMARK' have been sent around the country – one last year and another just recently.

The email warns recipients not to open it and not only refers to CNN and Microsoft alerts, but also carries the signature of the policewoman. Many receivers have therefore unwittingly opened the mail which itself contains a virus. The constable’s phone has been bombarded by calls from residents about the email. Yet while the policewoman herself bore the brunt of the calls last year, calls about this second chain mail have been bounced to her co-workers, as she is on maternity leave.

But angry recipients of the email need not bother phoning the police station, as calls to the constable’s phone have been routed to a voice mail.


Another death in a day-care

For the second time in just three weeks a toddler has died at a day-care centre – this time in the southern Copenhagen suburb of Vallensbæk. A three-year-old boy was found lifeless in the day-care centre’s changing room, where he was reportedly playing with other children. According to people at the centre, the boy suddenly turned blue in the face and fell unconscious.
A parent who is a nurse, and happened to be at the centre, attempted to revive the boy, but was unsuccessful.  As of early today, police had still received no clear indication of the cause of death. In mid January, a one-year-old boy choked on his lunch at a day-care centre in the western suburb of Ballerup and could not be saved.

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