ZinkGlobal – Copenhagen, Denmark - Atlas Obscura


This contemplative sculpture made out of old machine parts is meant to be the first in a series of sculptures around the world. 


Shortly after being inaugurated in 2012, the contemporary ZinkGlobal sculpture by Kim “TheZinker” Michael was under fire from influential art snobs. In their opinion, the waterfront figure was “amateurish,” “lacked artistic value,” and “should be returned to the recycling center.” They also complained that the artwork, made of old machine components, looked “out of place” in the fancy port area among classical statues, royal pavilions, and headquarters of respected Danish companies.

Another part of the debate focused on the reasonableness of an unauthorized sculptor being able to install anything on private land in a public space. Michael had namely, unlike his more established colleagues, bypassed various art committees, expert assessments, and state-licensed arbiters of taste and instead funded his artwork himself through private donations. In addition, the artist pays rent to a partnership organization that owns the paving where the controversial figure stands.

The 10-foot (three-meter) sculpture, believed to be inspired by Auguste Rodin’s The Thinker, depicts a global visionary sitting on the key to the future. Michael describes it as “open and inclusive rather than closed, solemn or cordoned off with ‘Do Not Touch’ signs.”

While the art elite disapproves of the metal scrap figure and some tourists overlook it (when rushing by on their way to the more popular Little Mermaid statue nearby), plenty of locals on the other hand find it cool and use it as a meeting point. They have nicknamed it “The Terminator,” due to its resemblance to the cyborg assassins in the Arnold Schwarzenegger franchise.

Know Before You Go

The nearest metro station is Marmorkirken, from there you can reach ZinkGlobal by foot in about 10-15 minutes.

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October 11, 2022

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