It was with great sadness that the Glyptotek learned that our Head of Research and Collections, Rune Frederiksen, had passed away at a terribly early age: just a few days after his 52nd birthday.
Since 2016, Rune has been in charge of the Glyptotek’s research and collection activities. He took great pride in systematising and streamlining key museum tasks: registration; preservation and digitisation of collections and archives; development of the museum’s research library and research infrastructure; research across the various fields of the museum’s collection; and partnerships with external researchers. Rune Frederiksen was erudite and cultured in the classic sense of the word; but also curious about other perspectives and new knowledge. He was a fount of outstanding knowledge, which he generously shared: not only with colleagues and peers, but also with the museum’s guests in the shape of lectures and guided tours. He conducted the latter with great pleasure and contagious enthusiasm; he was also an excellent communicator and storyteller. He tackled the development of exhibitions and other interpretation/public engagement activities within the field of classical archaeology with great love for the subject and unrivalled meticulousness, and attention to both detail and the overall context.
He developed his sound expertise as a student of classical archaeology at the University of Copenhagen, where he also gained a PhD in 2003. His international activities included studying in Rome and a stint as a research fellow at Worcester College and the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford (2004-7). From 2010-2015 he was director of the Danish Institute in Athens, responsible for the Danish-Greek excavations in the ancient Greek city state of Kalydon. This work was recently published in an impressive, two-volume work – The Ancient Theatre at Kalydon in Aitolia – written by Rune Frederiksen and Olympia Vikatou, and published by Aarhus Universitetsforlag. His extensive subject knowledge also spanned ancient cultures and excavations in Denmark, Italy, Greece, Cyprus and Jordan etc. As a result of his work on a number of international projects, conferences and exhibitions, his academic exactitude and his personal integrity, Rune Frederiksen was a highly valued and deeply respected figure in the world of classical archaeological research: he possessed an indispensable international outlook and network. He shared all the above with generosity and openness: rarely did his colleagues set off on a trip without his recommendations for contacts, interesting museums, locations and cultural experiences.
The demise of Rune Frederiksen represents a huge loss for both the profession and the Glyptotek. In his own calm, candid way, he played a major role as an archaeologist, researcher, supervisor, manager and colleague, while his infinite energy made him a focal point, both professionally and socially. Rune Frederiksen was caring and empathetic, and always had time for other people. On both the academic and personal front, he worked with impressive orderliness and integrity. He had a passionate sense of responsibility for the development of the profession and research, the professional and social well-being of colleagues, and the state of the world as a whole. He was dedicated, methodical and committed in everything he did, and his selfless efforts always served a higher purpose. He will be deeply missed by his many colleagues.
Rune Frederiksen lived in Roskilde with his wife Silke Müth-Frederiksen, and close to his family. Naturally, our thoughts and sympathy are with the family.