Friday, 12 November 2010
In an area where every building try to affirm itself, this one, designed by Kari Nissen Brodtkorb, actually takes advantage of its central position in Olav Selvaags Plass to create an exciting moment in the city through this play of volumes and colours and the spatial situations given by the different heights, even though private, enter and are visually assimilated by the public sphere. This effect would have been even stronger if the trees on the terraces were as big as shown in the initial renders.
Thursday, 11 November 2010
Last summer, Kristin Jardmund and her project for Gjerdrum School received the 2010’s Statens Byggeskikkpris and yesterday took place the official ceremony and visit to the winner project with the presence and speeches from all the different participants in the process, including politicians from the local authorities, members of the school, the president of the Jury Erling Dokk Holm and the architect Kristin Jarmund as well as the landscape architect Kari Bergo.
Tuesday, 9 November 2010
Monday, 8 November 2010
As most Europeans cities, Oslo has been making a huge investment to bring the city closer to its water front, removing large industrial areas and turning them into housing, commercial and business places. Ongoing is the second phase of Tjuvholmen where the main attraction will be the new Astrup Fearnley Museet, designed by Renzo Piano and supposed to open in 2012.
The initial project from the Italian architect is composed by 3 different buildings (the Astrup Fearnley Museum, an office building and a culture centre) all covered by a unifying curved roof that slopes down until touching the public park. The buildings are located in 2 different small islands connected by bridges. The exterior area will incorporate an observation tower, a Sculpture park and a small sand beach, which, according to the architect, will be one of the most beautiful places in the world, I guess he could say otherwise.
According to Piano, the building is inspired by Norway in many ways, not really specifying anything, except that there will be a lot of wood. There’s big expectations about the project and if it will or not open up Oslo for the international “star system”.
The Astrup Fernley Museum of modern Art, is a private own museum that opened originally in 1993 in a building not so far from Piano’s new project. In the permanent collection are represented artists like Asger Jorns, Gerhard Richter or Jeff Koons. There are also frequent temporary exhibitions from International and Norwegian modern artists.
Friday, 5 November 2010
It took place last night at the Architects Association in Oslo (OAF) a conference with Gary Bates, member of Spacegroup, and for 2 hours he presented to a full room how to be an architect and an entertainer. With some humour and some amusing arrogance Bates went through 4 recent projects in different stages that the office has been working on, plus an extra project: the office’s website spacegroup.no that is worth a visit.
With the normal and sour complaints about architecture competitions, Bates showed the result from some competitions they have been involved in: Oslo S (Oslo’s central Station) and the new Opera and Culture house in Kristiansund. Also, we got the chance to see the development of the Clarion Hotel in Trondheim and some of the studies for Drottninghög’s Masterplan, Helsingborg in Sweden.
In such a short time for such big projects we got a glance at the office’s method where it is clear a pragmatic analysis of the problems, a clever approach to the sites’ conditions, an interesting excitement to solve the city’s issues and even a lucid understanding of the economical and political issues involved. Although, the solutions come out as too complicated, formally speaking. And if it’s true that often complex problems require complex solutions, though complex doesn’t mean complicated, and that’s where things fall apart. It’s probably the result of a culture of too many glossy renders and a lot of style magazines.
Anyway, Gary Bates provided an interesting lecture and proved why his office has been getting so much work and have won so many competitions.
Final note: Is it normal to go to lectures with a bottle of beer in hand?