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. Rungstedlund Foundation, Rungstedlund Prize, Isak Dinesen, Karen Blixen Museum


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 Professor 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.


Each year the Rungstedlund Foundation presents The Rungstedlund Prize of DKK 50,000 to a person who has made a notable contribution in an area which interested Karen Blixen. The award is donated by Hørsholm Local Authority and was initiated in 1991.


1991: Louisianas stifter Knud W. Jensen 1992: Digteren Jørgen Gustava Brandt 1993: Skuespilleren Meryl Streep 1994: K.B.s sekretær og litterære eksekutor Clara Selborn 1995: Grafikeren Palle Nielsen 1996: Zoologen, dr. phil. Arne Schiøtz 1997: Kgl. skuespiller Bodil Kjer 1998: Digteren Thorkild Bjørnvig 1999: Hovedkraften bag oprettelsen af Karen Blixen Museum i Nairobi, Tove Hussein 2000: Forfatteren til Blixikon, afdelingsbibliotekar Liselotte Henriksen 2001: Forfatteren Inger Christensen 2002: Den kinesiske oversætter Lin Hua 2003: Prof. Aage Henriksen 2004: Ornitologen dr.phil Jon Fjeldså 2005: Forfatteren Suzanne Brøgger 2006: Kunsthistoriker og direktør Hans Edvard Nørregård-Nielsen 2007: Forfatteren til Karen Blixen. En fortællers liv, Judith Thurman 2008: Aage V. Jensens Fonde ved fondens formand Advokat eif Skov 2009: Forfatteren Klaus Rifbjerg 2010: Bogforlægger Johannes Riis 2011: Bogforlægger Otto B. Lindhardt 2012: Filminstruktør Gabriel Axel 2013: Skuespiller og instruktør Karen-Lise Mynster 2014: Cand.mag og journalist Marianne Juhl og og kunsthistoriker Marianne Wirenfeldt Asmussen 2015: Forfatter og historiker Tom Buk-Swienty 2016: Lic. scient. Jette Baagøe 2017: Forfatter, dr.phil. Niels Barfoed 2018: Professor Minik Rosing 2019: Filmdirector and screenwriter Lars von Trier