Gets torched on Thursday: Giant sculpture has appeared in Fjordbyen

by Nathalia Hentze Nielsen

Burning witches on Midsummer’s Day (called “Sankt Hans” in Denmark) is both old-fashioned and uninventive if you ask the people behind the gigantic crab, which has been built in Fjordbyen in Vestbyen, just down by the fjord.

Is it the best-looking midsummer pyre this year? It may well be if you ask us at MyAalborg.

Creating beautiful wooden sculptures as an alternative to the traditional (poor) witch that is ceremoniously burned during the midsummer celebration has become a tradition in Fjordbyen. The sculpture itself functions as the pyre.

“It took around four or five hours to build the crab last Saturday. We made it of recycled tree like boards and leftover pieces from our houses,” Jens Munk Clemmensen, board member at Fjordbyen, says.

The crab will be torched on Thursday, June 23rd, at 19:30. 

Mikkel Munk Iversen and Christian Steen Møller are busy creating their crab. Photo: Jens Munk Clemmensen.

All the houses – or shacks like they call them – were recently fireproofed, and the leftover materials have been used for the midsummer sculpture.

All pressure-impregnated wood and paint has been discarded.

This year’s midsummer pyre is a gigantic crab made of wood. Photo: Nana Sofia Hansen.

Get a look of the crab before it’s put to the torch

The midsummer crab was made by Mikkel Munk Iversen and Christian Steen Møller who both own a house in Fjordbyen.

Mikkel is a theater technician at Theater Nordkraft and is thus used to turning set designers ideas into creative solution on the theater stage.

Last year, the sculpture was a big troll made out of tree. And with the troll, the crab, and more sculptures coming in the future, the residents in Fjordbyen hope to inspire others to innovate their midsummer-pyre.

The crab in question. Photo: Jens Munk Clemmensen.

“The beauty of our yearly midsummer sculptures is that they soon disappear. Just like with theater art, it is about experiencing the sculpture intimately – and enjoying art here and now,” Mikkel Munk Iversen explains.

The long legs and life-like crab eyes are made of wrought iron and it’s so remarkably artistic that we think you should stop by Fjordbyen and have a look before it disappears forever.

You can get an overview of this year’s midsummer parties (in Danish) right here.