Middle-age masterpieces

Danish churches, and in particular village churches, house an impressive wealth of visible murals and frescos. Around 1,800 of Denmark’s 2,400 churches date as far back as the Middle Ages and church frescos have been uncovered in over 600 of them so far. This is estimated to be the highest concentration of surviving church murals anywhere in the world.

Public paintings

Many murals were uncovered in the 19th and 20th centuries from under layers of lime and restored, having been hidden for centuries. They are a unique and easily accessible attraction and they’re free to admire. The oldest frescos date back to the 12th century and were painted in the Romanesque style by artists from elsewhere in Europe. The frescos painted from the 14th century onwards are Gothic, a style favoured by native Danish painters. These frescos are an extremely valuable Danish cultural and artistic resource.

Further reading

The Kalkmalerier website (church fresco website) is in Danish but it can be used as a visual resource, with striking picture galleries of frescos around Denmark.

Read more about Danish history

A quick timeline of Denmark