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Cisternerne

Buried deep beneath Søndermarken's green grass is a massive underground world holding the city's most unique art space.

Two glass pyramids mark the entrance to the museum but that’s all you’ll see of the Cisterns above the ground. Clamber down the cold concrete steps into the caverns beneath and prepare to be dazzled.

The Cisterns, or Cisternerne in Danish, are the former water reservoirs for Copenhagen, located under the green grass of Søndermarken park across from Frederiksberg Castle in Frederiksberg. Here, in a massive underground space, 16 million litres of drinking water used to flow in a space free from natural light.

In the dark, cold and moist underground world, reminiscent of cathedrals and gloomy catacombs, you’ll now find the city’s most exciting and dynamic contemporary art space. 

Immersive art in Copenhagen

When you walk around the area and its changing exhibitions, it’s a fully immersive experience. Artists are invited to create exhibitions suiting this unique environment, so you might find, as in the past, that they have incorporated boat trips in their pieces, or hanging lanterns for light, fire or mirrors. The space invites you to experience another world, perhaps a dreamlike labyrinth or the magical interplay between light and shadow. Climate change-focused exhibitions find a particularly special space here as well. 

Practical notes

It is cold in the Cisterns even on sunny days, so come prepared. There is no toilet and there are a lot of steps to entry. Check the website before arrival to see current exhibitions, and note that the Cisterns are typically closed between December and March.