Naja Utzon Popov
Danish sculptor, textile designer and ceramicist Naja Utzon Popov was born in Copenhagen, Denmark in 1973 into a family of artists. She inherited her creative genes from her grandfather, Jørn Utzon, a Danish architect known for designing the iconic Sydney Opera House in Australia; her mother, prominent Danish artist Lin Utzon; and her father, acclaimed Australian architect Alex Popov.
Naja’s childhood years in Denmark have always been an important source of inspiration for her work, as were the years she spent in Australia studying drawing, painting and etching at the Julian Ashton Art School. After moving to England, Naja continued her formal artistic training with a BA in Ceramics at the University of Westminster school of Media and Design. Today, she lives in her native Denmark and works out of her studio in central Copenhagen.
Thanks to her family background, Naja has always been exposed to contemporary design. These influences find expression in her work, where she translates her encounters with nature into textiles, glassware, ceramics and sculptures. By adding her own personal touch to works that beautifully combine contemporary design with Mother Nature’s gifts, Naja carries on the family tradition of creating outstanding art.
Naja has created gravity-defying clay sculptures for the Rosendahl A/S corporate headquarters in Copenhagen and presentation sculpture was commissioned by the Institute of Architects in Barcelona. A monumental outdoor sculpture entitled 'Gathering', which rises from the ground like ancient columns formed from Welsh slate, was commissioned for the corporate collection of the Danish organisation, Humana. One of her more recent project of a sculpture installation was for art collectors Sheela & Ivan Levys new restaurant in Palma de Mallorca, Fera Restaurant. Other sculptures and installations have been purchased by the likes of Saks Fifth Avenue, Lovell Chen Architects and the new hospital wing in Copenhagens main hospital designed by 3xN Architects, to name but a few.
Bespoke retail design projects include an exquisite line of glassware for Zone, sushi dinner service for UK sushi chain Feng Sushi and two exclusive ranges of high quality floor rugs commissioned by specialist retailer, Carl Hansen & Son in Denmark. Naja has worked directly with architects and interior designers to create unique and site specific artworks and floor art in the form of rugs.