© Tourismus-Service Fehmarn, Dirk Moeller

On a cultural tour through Fehmarn

Where culture has a history

Culture and nature are a perfect match. So it is hardly surprising that a world-famous artist has worked on Fehmarn and an international star designer has immortalised himself in imposing buildings. Fehmarn has also an active and independent artists’ scene and you can attend a great variety of events, concerts and theatre performances.

If you are interested in culture, Fehmarn has a lot to offer with museums and galleries to broaden your horizons. Let yourself be entertained and inspired or follow in the footsteps of former islanders. Indeed, Fehmarn has inspired many artists. Ernst Ludwig Kirchner spent four summers here and painted 120 oil paintings. In the E. L. Kirchner Documentation Centre in Burg you will find evidence of his artistic work on the island. Lyonel Feininger, one of the most important painters of classical modernism, was also inspired by the island during a visit.

The medieval churches and ground landmarks, such as Stone Age long-bed graves, bear testify the amazing history of the island. With the Fehmarn Art Days, a special cultural highlight with art, literature and music awaits you every year from May to July.

Ernst Ludwig Kirchner - painter of paradise

Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, German expressionist and one of the most important painters of the 20th century, lived and painted on Fehmarn for four summers. In 1908 and from 1912 to 1914 he completed over 120 oil paintings, as well as hundreds of drawings, sketches and several sculptures on the island – a tenth part of his life's work. It is not without reason that he described Fehmarn as his "earthly paradise with a wonderful coastline, sometimes of occasional South Sea beauty..." and wrote: "Here I experienced the last unity of man and nature".

Discover Kirchner

In the E. L. Kirchner Documentation Centre in Burg, the Ernst Ludwig Kirchner Society presents many reproductions of the most important paintings in their original size, historical photographs, reproductions of sketch sheets and a lot of information about the life and work of the artist. Our tip: Embark upon the Ernst-Ludwig-Kirchner cycle or hiking trails to Burg, Staberhuk or Wulfen and discover the places where the famous expressionist lived and worked.

Famous painting by Ernst Ludwig Kirchner
© Ernst Ludwig Kirchner Verein Fehmarn e.V.

Arne Jacobsen - Architect of tourism

In the course of the boom in tourism in the 1960s, the municipality of Burg auf Fehmarn decided to transform the Burgtiefe peninsula with its southern beach into a seaside resort. The Danish architect Arne Jacobson, who is still considered one of the most important architects and designers of the 20th century, won the competition for the project. Jacobsen focussed his designs on a combination of the worlds of experience and social life. And he sought to bring nature and architecture into harmony. For this reason, and in order to preserve the many open and green spaces, he decided in favour of a storey construction. In 1966, the go-ahead was given for the construction work, which spanned seven years - until two years after Jacobsen's death in 1971. Originally conceived as three to four-storey buildings, the three high-rise buildings were eventually extended to 17 storeys due to the increasing demand for space. Today the ensemble is a listed building.

© Tourismus-Service Fehmarn, Thies Rätzke
  • The construction works on the Burgtiefe peninsula took about 4 years (1968-1972) to complete a holiday centre with an architecture that is oriented to the coastline and the natural topography.

  • 2018 marked the 50th anniversary of the development of the Burgtiefe Peninsula by architect Arne Jacobsen.

  • In 1972 the seawater wave-pool was the last of the ensemble to be completed; and in 2008 a new building with spa, sauna and water-slide was added to turn the whole complex into an adventure pool.

  • Double the height of the glazed south façade and also light-spending, the north façade of the seawater wave-pool opens the view to the sky and the ruins of Glambek Castle.

  • The 3 striking 17-storey vista-buildings were originally planned to be 4 storeys high only.

  • There are 9 rooms on each floor of the buildings - all of them with sea view.

  • In 2004 the entire Arne Jacobsen ensemble was listed as a historical monument, the seawater wave-pool even as early as 1991.

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