Directory Free Newsletter Contact  

Copenhagen's Erotica Museum
By Kregg P. J. Jorgenson
Posted May 28, 2007


Copenhagen’s Erotica Museum celebrates erotic and sex. It’s not a typical celebration with  balloons, noise-makers, party hats and people running around shouting, ‘Whoopee! but the museum does have enough unabashed exhibits of erotica and pornography to make one realize it has been a hot topic long before the internet said: Click here.

Since opening its portals in 1994 the Museum has seen one million visitors, half of which are to be believed were women who grace its spotlessly clean red-carpeted entrance. The museum was founded by world renowned photographers and artists, Ole Ege and Kim Clausen.  The museum is appropriately  located in Scandinavia since it was home to the Vikings of the Vanir cult who unabashedly celebrated fertility and tied many of their important rituals to it.

Today even the Danes don’t seem to view human sexuality as just another aspect of everyday life. After all, they say, in this enlightened day and age shouldn’t we all approach the subject of sex with a certain amount of intellectual objectivity and rational non-judgmental observation on this all too normal human condition?  Intellectually yes, we should.  Realistically though, we can’t.

  It is erotica, for crying or perhaps moaning out loud, and the museum at 24 Kobmagergade that is just minutes from Tivoli Garden and halfway down the usually crowded Stroget  (one of the largest series of pedestrian streets in Europe) will not just educate and titillate you but just may cause you to snicker, snort, guffaw, giggle, and/or blush! That’s all part of the human condition as well; the human condition that even St. Augustine, the famed 5th century philosopher celebrated when he was quoted as saying, “God grant me chastity…but not just yet.” If that was a Saint’s philosophy on the subject then where does that leave the rest of us?

   For some that leaves the Museum and for 100 Kroner (roughly $19 dollars) you’ll not only get a look at what made people briefly put aside chastity and howl throughout several millennia but you’ll get a look at some things you probably have never seen outside of sneaking guilty and wide eyed peeks at an illustrated Kama Sutra at what appears to be a naked game of Twister. You might even find yourself muttering, ‘Yowsa, is that even possible?’ or awarding a score of 9.9 for degree of difficulty.

  While the museum’s name and lusty content draws in the curious those who seem to enjoy it the most, at least on the day I visited, were a group of senior citizen women from England who seemed to be humorously taken with some of the more entertaining exhibits.

  “Oh my, will you look at that?” laughed one kindly grandmotherly looking woman who was pointing to a ‘life-like tableaux’ of the secret sex life of a famous English historical figure, Fanny Hill. This particular historical figurewas made by craftsmen from the world famous people of Madam Tussauds, which I suppose kind of adds another meaning to the ‘Madam’ part of the moniker but perhaps I’m just waxing on.

   The older women seemed to be enjoying themselves more so than other individuals or couples touring the museum who at times looked slightly uncomfortable or embarrassed while the English women were chuckling at the naughty. Time has a way of stripping away inhibitions or dulling embarrassments or in the very least, allowing us to recognize our own culturally induced prudishness or mores. On another floor the elderly group of women were parked in front of another exhibit that pricked their interest.

  “I think it says it’s Royal Copehangen!” exclaimed one of the grandmotherly looking types studying a large and ornately decorated ceramic phallus. “My tea set is Royal Copenhagen!”

  “It’s enough to make me want to knit another tea cozy…” chuckled another.

  “You’re horrible!” said the second woman in a tone that suggested she wasn’t.

  It is the kind of tourist attraction that leaves visitors nervously grinning, awkwardly quiet, or even speechless at times. The brochure promises‘one visit…will illuminate your conception of eroticism and pornography forever.’

  Illuminate’s fitting because it sheds some light on the subject with a fairly unbiased and almost clinical look at erotica from the times of the ancient sexual acrobatics of the Etruscans, Greeks, Romans, and every age up until the 1900s with paintings, drawings, sculptor, photographs, early

‘French postcards,’ and racy whatnot in four remarkably clean and well lighted finely polished floors. Add to that the carefully researched information and historical aspect to the carnal considerations as well as the private practices of such denizens as Marilyn Monroe, Sigmund Freud, Adolph Hitler and various Royals and the ‘sleaze’ factor that often goes with other such enterprises is dramatically diminished and overpowered by curiosity.

  Marilyn Monroe may have starred in Some Like It Hot but apparently that seems to be the preferred theme of the other historical notables as well.

  Voyeuristic as it seems the museum is also used for sexual education purposes for Danish students helping alleviate any Puritanical or learned guilt for walking through its doors. You won’t be branded with a Scarlet Letter for visiting the museum but a quick tour will definitely make its mark on you regarding certain people or aspects of history.       That last bit of news either says that the museum is safe and nice enough for women to attend and that perhaps women are just as randy as men. Judging from the museum, its exhibits, and the reactions of some of the visitors my impression it’s a little bit of both.

  The museum is open daily to the blushing or not so blushing public. 

Erotica Museum Copenhagen  


© 2006 All content property of European Weekly unless where otherwise accredited