Karen Blixen’s wish to safeguard the future of Rungstedlund after her death led to the establishment of the Rungstedlund Foundation. Three of her siblings donated their portions of the property and Karen Blixen also donated the future income from her writing. A radio address, in which she asked her listeners to contribute one krone each so that the grounds could be preserved as a bird sanctuary and be opened to the public, resulted in over 80,000 kroner being sent in to the Foundation.
AN INDEPENDENT INSTITUTION
The Rungstedlund Foundation and Karen Blixen’s literary executor, Clara Selborn, administrated Karen Blixen’s artistic rights. The object of the Foundation is: “to preserve Rungstedlund as an independent institution, to maintain a bird sanctuary in the grounds and to use the main building for a cultural or scientific purpose.”
The current board of governors:
Chairman of the Board: Michael Bjørn Nellemann (Director at Obelske familiefond)
Members of the Board:
Bent Møllmann Jürgensen, civil engineer and ornithologist
Jesper Rothe, lawyer
Kjeld von Folsach, Museum Director
Architect MAA, Johan Carlsson
Ambassador, adj. professor Hans Henrik Bruun
rofessor Lasse Horne Kjældgaard
Vice President Corporate Communications & Public Affairs, Line Aarsland
THE DANISH ACADEMY OF LETTERS
The Danish Academy of Letters, which Karen Blixen helped to establish in 1960, has had the use of Rungstedlund for its meetings ever since her death, and for many years the house was not used for anything else. But with the income from the film Out of Africa, and the worldwide increase in sales of Karen Blixen’s books that followed in the wake of the film, the board of the Foundation was in a position to realise the clause relating to a “cultural purpose” and in 1987 work started on turning the main building into a museum. Following the renovation work, directed by architect Vilhelm Wohlert, the Museum opened on May 14 1991.