Natural History Museum of Denmark receives DKK 166 million for new exhibits

3 September 2018 -- OUR PLANET The A.P. Møller og Hustru Chastine Mc-Kinney Møllers Fond til almene Formaal has donated DKK 166 million for the creation of the exhibits at the new Natural History Museum of Denmark at the University of Copenhagen, to be opened to the public in 2022. The main theme of the exhibits will be Our Planet, with a focus on the planet’s 4 1/2 billion years of exciting history and the relationship between human beings and the planet. 

Action is needed to steer developments on Earth in a positive direction. This requires that the most recent knowledge about nature and the climate be made available to everyone. Consequently, natural history museums have never had a more important role to play. As the national natural history museum, the Natural History Museum of Denmark, with its collections, research and location in the Botanical Garden in Copenhagen, is in a unique position to bring to life and pass on important knowledge about our planet and the significance of the climate for all life on Earth. This position is now strengthened significantly with the new exhibition space to be built in the Botanical Garden and the donation, which ensures that exhibits can be displayed in the new museum. 

“In recent years, the weather has been extremely unpredictable, from a cold, wet summer last year to this summer’s extreme heat and lack of rain. People are becoming increasingly aware of the reality of climate changes caused by human activity. But how are we dealing with this? At the Natural History Museum of Denmark, we want to take the lead and help democratize science, so that important knowledge is made available to everyone. Thanks to the large and extremely generous donation from the A.P. Møller Fund, we now have the opportunity of the century to do just that at the new museum. Not only will the exhibits inspire, engage and arouse curiosity, but they will also help visitors take an active position regarding major and important questions about nature and, equally as important, the role we play,” says Museum Director Peter C. Kjærgaard. 

The Chairperson of the A.P. Møller Fund, Ane Mærsk Mc-Kinney Uggla, is also pleased with the donation. 

“Museums are both an oasis and a source of information. Children who experience an inspiring trip to a museum will often carry this memory with them into adulthood. As a result, the encounter with completely unique objects and inspiring exhibits can help shape both present-day and the future. That is why I am pleased that we could use the A.P. Møller Fund to help carry out the strong vision for the new national museum for natural history,” says Ane Mærsk Mc-Kinney Uggla. 

International partnership

When the new Natural History Museum of Denmark opens its doors to the public in 2022, it will be with completely new permanent exhibits. The Dutch company Tinker Imagineers is responsible for developing the new exhibit design, while the National History Museum of Denmark will be providing the content. Tinker Imagineers won an international competition held by the A. P. Møller Fund in which many of the world’s leading exhibit design companies competed. 

“We want to set new standards for what a natural history museum is and can be. Our national natural history collection with unique specimens from around the world will be displayed in challenging and exciting ways. We want to raise the exhibits to a level that competes with the best in the world. This requires the help of a professional and visionary team,” says the Head of Exhibitions and Visitor Experience at the Natural History Museum of Denmark, Juliette M. Fritsch, and elaborates: 

“Developing new exhibits for an entire museum is a complex and comprehensive task. Tinker Imagineers is the right partner for the task, with both the experience and capacity to take on this challenge. They are creative thinkers and know how to maintain a focus on the visitor and the museum experience.” 

In Denmark, Tinker Imagineers are known for their design of the exhibits at the new Tirpitz Museum in Blåvand. 

Our Planet

The main theme of the exhibits at the Natural History Museum of Denmark will be Our Planet, with a focus on the planet’s 4 1/2 billion years of exciting history and the relationship between human beings and the planet. More concretely, the new exhibits will revolve around seven themes that will be communicated through a series of exhibit concepts and experiences for visitors. The exhibits will include unique items from the museum collection of around 14 million. 

The seven themes are: 

Our home in the universe

Here visitors will experience Earth in the big picture as a living green and blue planet in the solar system in an endless universe. 

Our living planet

The Earth is an enormous interconnected dynamic system created by life, the forces of geology and the climate, which all continue to develop our planet. 

Ripples of life

This is an homage to the biodiversity of the planet and a reminder of the fragility of life. Our planet has been afflicted by mass extinction five times, followed by explosions of life. Today, we find ourselves in the midst of the sixth mass extinction, but also the possibility to alter this development. 

The story of humankind

Here the focus is on the story of humankind and our relationship to the planet in the past, present and future. 


Beneath the surface of the ocean is an amazing underwater world teeming with life. But it is also a world that is much more vulnerable than we believed in the past, making it important for us to do all we can to preserve it. 

Arctic Zone

The Arctic Zone is like a sensitive instrument that measures the health of the planet. Based on the museum’s extensive collection of Arctic natural history specimens, a story is told about the beautiful and fragile nature in which people play a paramount role for the future. 

Nordic nature

Nordic nature is exceptional and unique. Here the story is told in a new and lively way that will open visitors’ eyes to the world just outside their front door.  

Facts and figures

  • The A.P. Møller Fund is supporting the permanent exhibits at the Natural History Museum of Denmark with a donation of DKK 166 million. This donation will pay for the majority of the exhibits. 
  • The permanent exhibits at the Natural History Museum of Denmark will cover a total space of around 4,900 m2. There will also be a special exhibit space of around 650 m2 and an Ocean Room of around 650 m2. The total exhibition space in the new building will be around 6,200 m2. 
  • The new museum consists of a new building, as well as the renovation and refurbishment of a number of existing buildings. 
  • The donation from the A.P. Møller Fund is given on the condition that construction takes place as planned. 
  • The museum will be located in the Botanic Garden in Copenhagen and is expected to open to the public in 2022.

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