The cultural institution now named Brandts was founded in 1987 in an old industrial building complex under the name of Brandts Klædefabrik (Brandt’s Textile Mill) as Denmark’s first international centre of art and culture. Today, Brandts also houses an Educational Centre, specializing in combining art and education, and Brandts Shop, the only art bookstore on the island of Funen.
Brandts comprises three separate institutions: Kunsthallen Brandts (The Art Hall at Brandt’s), Museet for Fotokunst (The Museum of Photo Art) and Mediemuseet (The Media Museum). Each has its own board and director, but all share a joint administration that handles economy, personel, marketing and mediation. The three institutions are non-profit organizations supported by the Odense municipality, businesses, and private and public funds.
In 2005, the cultural institution changed its name from Brandts Klædefabrik to Brandts. There were two main reasons for this name change. First of all, Brandts wanted to distinguish itself as an independent part of the larger Brandts Klædefabrik complex, comprising the former industrial site and all of its buildings. Secondly, the three institutions at Brandts – Kunsthallen Brandts, Museet for Fotokunst and Mediemuseet – wanted to combine their strength and unite under a common brand name.