Danish architect. He was the son of Andreas Bentsen (1839–1907), a
master builder and founder of the Håndværkerskolen at Vallekilde.
Bentsen worked with his father from an early age on farm buildings,
gymnasiums and assembly halls, non-conformist churches and folk high
schools. In 1896 he began a carpentry apprenticeship and passed the
examination of the Teknisk Skole. He entered the Arkitektskole of
the Kunstakademiet in Copenhagen in 1899 but left in protest in
1902, first to travel in Italy with his father, then to join P. V.
Jensen-Klint, who had taught him mathematics and drawing. Together
they entered the first competition for a national monument to N. F.
S. Grundtrig (1912), inspired by Gothic cross-vaulting. As principal
of the Håndværkeskolen at Vallekilde (1908–11) and of the
Bygmesterskolen at Holbæk (1913–20) he sought to improve the quality
of training through surveying and analysing good examples of old
buildings. He had learnt this from Jensen-Klint. The natural
development of craftsmanship lay in refining traditional
constructions. He simplified form and construction by concentrating
on the characteristics of materials and taking heed of
socio-economic factors. His first houses were influenced by
Jensen-Klint’s elaborate Baroque-inspired idiom, as in the Yellow
Palace (1907) at Torbenfeldt. In the houses in Møllevangen and
Fruens Vænge, Holbæk (1911–13), Svinninge Power Station (1913) and
houses for the sculptor Kai Nielsen (1914) at Ørnekulsvej 14 and
Johannes Bjerg (1916) at Skodsborgvej 110, both in Copenhagen, the
simpler forms stemmed from classicism and the architecture of
Gottlieb Bindesbøll. The buildings are rationalized to suit their
Hovedbygningen fra forsiden
The row houses, Bakkehusene in Copenhagen 1921-23
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