MEE Studio creates wood-and-copper inside for cafe in former church in Copenhagen

Structure agency MEE Studio has designed the interiors and bespoke picket furnishings for a restaurant and boutique within the Nikolaj Kunsthal artwork gallery inside an outdated church.

The municipality-run gallery, which is about in a deconsecrated church in central Copenhagen, requested MEE Studio to design a “vigorous and useful” area.

Earlier than designing the inside areas, which function heat and tactile supplies similar to copper and wooden, the rooms in Nikolaj Kunsthal first needed to be restored.

The gallery is positioned in a former church

“The areas had been used for varied functions for the reason that Eighties together with artwork installations and different altering makes use of,” MEE Studio founder Morten Emil Engel advised Dezeen.

“This has left the areas with remnants of ad-hoc electrical wiring, bricked-up arches, blocked-off home windows and arbitrary lighting. Moreover, there was no water provide or plumbing within the areas that now have the cafe.”

The studio reestablished the grand door and window openings within the area and changed the outdated acrylic paint with breathable lime-based paint, whereas additionally including acoustic plaster to enhance the acoustics of the areas.

Copper splashback and oak bar in Danish cafe
Untreated copper was used as a backsplash for the bar

On the centre of the cafe, Engel created an extended bar that additionally features as a ticket counter and is constituted of strong oak wooden.

Wooden was additionally used for all the opposite furnishings, together with benches, tables and sculptural cabinets, which Engel designed particularly for the undertaking utilizing European oak from sustainable forestry.

“I wished the benches to reference church benches – a bit chunky and heavy,” he stated. “The church structure could be very sturdy with the church tower having two-metre thick partitions. So the furnishings needed to have some substance to them.”

Wooden furniture by MEE Studio
The furnishings enhances the “sturdy” church structure

Engel additionally aimed to provide the items a up to date really feel by fusing their “heavy look” with extra modern components.

“All of the furnishings has seen joinery and tectonics in fumed oak, which permits the consumer to see how they’re made and assembled,” he stated.

“I added some ornamental inlays within the bar counter and boutique cabinets. Inlays had been historically used as a means of repairing wooden and I wished to symbolise that restore could be lovely and sustainable,” he added.

“On this means, it’s sending the message that the furnishings ought to have an extended life and be repaired if it ages.”

Furniture in Nikolaj Kunsthal by MEE Studio
Artworks enhance the partitions, right here Pull by Martha Hviid

Behind the central bar, a copper backsplash provides an eyecatching materials element along with the matching sink and worktops, which had been designed in reference to the roof of the outdated church.

“As many conventional buildings in Copenhagen, the roof of St Nikolaj Church is made with conventional copper roofing, which has aged to a wealthy inexperienced patina over time,” Engel stated.

“I wished to reference the prevailing materials palate of the church however use it in a brand new means. So the kitchen options worktops, sinks and backsplash in uncooked untreated copper, which can evolve superbly with time.”

Copper details in Nikolaj Kunsthal cafe
Lime-based paint was used for the partitions

The white partitions of the cafe and retailer had been contrasted with not simply the copper and wooden but additionally a burgundy crimson cloth designed by dressmaker Raf Simons for Kvadrat, which was used for the cushions and backs of the sofas and chairs.

The color was a nod to a number of the area’s unique color however might additionally assist disguise crimson wine spills within the cafe.

“Oakwood was already used all through the church so it appeared pure to make use of oak as a fabric,” Engel defined.

“There was additionally the burgundy crimson paint which had been used initially for some woodwork, as an example, the steps within the tower and the ceiling in what’s now the cafe,” he added.

“So it appears pure to work with an interpretation of the burgundy crimson for the colour of the cushions. I matched the burgundy crimson to a incredible Kvadrat textile designed by Raf Simons and it labored in offering vibrancy, but additionally as a sensible color in a restaurant the place crimson wine is served.”

Artwork in Nikolaj Kunsthal
Purple cloth was used for the seating, with the paintings Mercury (socks) hanging above

In addition to the bespoke furnishings items, the area was additionally embellished with rigorously chosen artworks which have ties to town of Copenhagen.

“Mercury (socks) is {a photograph} by the well-known Danish/Norwegian artist duo Elmgreen & Dragset from a collection of classical sculptures by the world-famous Danish sculptor Bertel Thorvaldsen,” Engel defined.

“The Thorvaldsen Museum is positioned only some minutes away from Nikolaj Kunsthal, so the work relates each to artwork from the nineteenth century and modern artwork from the twenty first century which is what you discover in Nikolaj Kunsthal.”

Different latest inside initiatives in Copenhagen embody Space10’s headquarters, which has a kiosk-like design library, and the cafe and store design for Designmuseum Denmark by OEO Studio.

The pictures is by Paolo Galgani.