Oliver Gustav’s Copenhagen Home
Crooked and slanted, the apartment of designer Oliver Gustav in Copenhagen is anything but practical. However, it is the beauty within this historical preservation and its outfit that makes it so significant.
Gustav is best known for his store designs in New York and Copenhagen, his own line of furniture and an affinity for 17th-Century antiques. His apartment in Copenhagen is an expression of stillness and mood against a pleasing backdrop of 18th-century architecture.
Being the owner of an architecturally listed building means there is nothing you can do to alter the historical designs; not the sloping floors, impractical sized kitchens nor the bathrooms or placement of outlets and switches. Gustav has faced this with grace and ease, referring to the process as “taking a step back in time”.
Built in 1734, the apartment maintains its historical bones with unsealed pine floors, grand ceilings and original windowpanes with their warped and wavy glass. Finishing with a matte mineral paint nods to the texture of the old plaster whilst pieces scooped up at flea markets in France and Denmark add character to the quiet space.
The aesthetic is often described as dark or murky but Gustav’s interpretation is more playful and hyggeligt (the Danish word for ‘cosy’).
This historical apartment represents design which is not minimalistic, but rather evocative and textural – an exploration of Gustav’s own sensibility.