Studio b3

_Oppgavens intensjon: En fornyelse av arkitektur gjennom å utfordre forhold mellom natur og den urbane kultur.

_Oppgavens utfordring: Å søke et presist forhold mellom begrepsparet byen/ naturen som på ulike og overraskende måter skal komplimentere hverandre. En kreativ prosess som gir en klarere forståelse og arkitektonisk innsikt i hvordan dine valgte fenomener kan overlappe, komplimentere eller filtrere i hverandre ansees som en del av oppgavens utfordring.

_Oppgaven: Hver student velger sitt fenomen ut fra begrepsparet byen/ naturen. Forståelsen og samspillet mellom dem skal motivere prosjektet mot en bestemt romlig identitet.

_Motivasjon og målsetning: Klar romlig identitet/ arkitektonisk presisjon i prosess og i presentasjon av endelig prosjekt.

Ditt valgte urbane fenomen skal starte din arkitekturdiskusjon. Det urbane fenomenets oppgave er å nå en romlig struktur som innbyr til et samspill mellom mennesker og deres steder. Strukturen skal ikke illustrere fenomenet, men kreve, mottaeller være inspirert av dets spesifikke egenart ut fra dine egne vurderinger, erfaringer og arkitektoniske intensjoner. Det er opp til deg på hvilket tidspunkt i prosessen de to begrepsdannelser begynner å overlappe, komplimentere eller infiltrere hverandre, men din egen diskusjon må i større grad klargjøre på hvilken måte samspillet mellom de to subjekter skal forstås og deretter romlig utøves. Utviklingen av ditt urbane fenomen mot en romlig struktur skal forstås som en infrastruktur, og den skal være åpen og mottagelig for dialog med ditt valgte naturbegrep. Kursets arkitektoniske målsetning kan først nås når samspillet mellom begrepsparet inntreffer. Studio Bygg 3 v/ Per Olaf Fjeld, Lisbeth Funck & Rolf Gerstlauer

Urban phenomenon_Isolation

– fear and fascination

– to isolate, separate

What first springs into mind is human isolation. To be isolated can be a dreadful experience or the complete opposite, a self- inflicted situation with the purpose of achieving a deeper sense of consentration or insight. To be isolated in a city full of people makes a person feel estranged in a negative way, not being able to achieve contact due to barriers of language, behaviour or other aspects of your personality. In some strange way a high density of people makes you care less about your next door neighbour, while in areas of low density, distance is usually no barrier for human relations. We often choose to live in a crowded place for the opportunities it offers, not necessarily to achieve contact with the random person next to us.

Some people seek isolation in the most extreme sense, often for a confined period of time, in order to focus or reach a deeper sense of understanding. How do I know how I would react to self- chosen, total isolation for a longer period of time, and how would that experience enrichen me? Would it compensate for what I would have to renounce? Milder forms of isolation are the measures we take to achieve privacy and security. These can be barriers for sound, view and movement.

Nature phenomenon_water

Not just ANY water – the OCEAN

– Matter with everchanging form, only the amount is constant. it can convert into different states, lke vapour or ice, and can even make energy in the prosess. I grew up by and feel a strong connection to the ocean. I find myself quite addicted to be near it. It is a source of constant fascination.

You encounter th ocan at lands end, that intriguing area between water and solid ground. The water sometimes seems to conquer land as it makes imprints and traces from its path in the ground, but then again, these paths can easily be obstructed by random obstacles and are only there for a brief moment. The ocean is a moving, floating everchanging borderline that divides and concludes land, but gives a feeling of freedom to move rather than restriction. Where I come from there is no archipelago sheltering the shore from the North Sea. Collecting whatever drifted ashore was a favourite pasttime when I was a kid. The strange cans, rubber gloves and bottles of washing- up liquid can easily spark your imagination and make your mind wander to foreign shores.

The ocean is full of contradictions, it has an interesting duality. It can be both alluring and dangerous, harmonious and chaotic, peaceful and violent. In many ways like images of the human mind. The ocean is unpredictable, might take you by surprise and demands caution. Tranquil waters can soothe you, and in the next moment have the power to conquer and destroy. I’m fascinated by the way a wave hits a technical, manmade structure, like an oilrig, a supertanker or a wavebreaker. They are designed to withstand, or even tame the forces.

“Mayday, mayday, Alexander Kie…”

It`s 6. 30 pm on the 27th of march 1980. The oilrig Alexander Kielland sends out a distress signal. I`s getting dark, galeforce winds, big waves and structural fatigue has caused one of the five legs to suddenly snap off. The platform has tilted alarmingly. The rescue operation in the darkness and rough weather is extremely difficult, and only 20 minutes later the tragedy occurs; the platform capsizes. 123 persons are trapped inside and dies. 

I was 13 years old when this happened, and it made a huge impact on me. It´s an experience I will never forget and will carry with me always.   It influenced my home town greatly, leaving a dark cloud hanging over it for a long time. Everyone were in some way affected.  The leg was towed in to the port of Stavanger to be examined. We sailed around it with our boat, and took in the amazing sight of the enormous leg, slowly following the ocean´s movement, the gaping separation- wound showcasing the tremendous powers of destruction. I guess that was my first realization of the overwhelming power of the ocean and the strange esthetic of destruction.

Divided paths (top, left)

Can I disappear for a moment, be unseen by the person next to me, have walls around me that allows me to sense the city by just hearing it? Maybe that will give another image of my surroundings, visual or imagined? My first model is thought as an infrastructure that goes on, where a flow of people is suddenly divided into individual, isolated paths. The walls around each path have different heights, which give different degrees of isolation from the the people around.

Layers and strings (top, 2nd from the left)

Layers add on to the isolation. You can enter it according to the degree of your desire to get isolated. Various stages of isolation can be reached according to your position in the structure. The walls might be perforated to allow various amounts of light.

The string- model is an exploration of a space being divided into isolated segments in three dimensions. The strings “screw up” the space, punctures it and divides it. Divisions of space into isolated segments.

Reflection (bottom, left)

Maybe a kind of narcicism? Reflecting surfaces, both inside and outside. From the outside the room disappears as the space around it only reflects itself and gets absorbed by its own reflection. The interior space gets isolated from its surroundings. The greatest “attraction” lies in the surface. If you do find your way inside, you become aware of the

angles of the room, showing fragments of yourself and the space you`re in, and you loose the notion of the world outside. You are taken out of context for a moment. Maybe this is what happens when we look into all the reflecting surfaces of the city, the shop windows, shiny steel and polished stone surfaces. 

Artificial landscape (bottom, 2nd from the left)

This model has a landscape- character where isolation is achieved, or experienced, by the way of obstructions in the artificial landscape. At some points you are sheltered, at some points incredibly exposed. I see my project at lands end, as an extension of land, which to me is an intriguing place to be. The border between land and ocean is constantly shifting, creating a moving borderline between dry & wet, air & water, etc,etc. The function could be anything, maybe an oceanside park, dwellings or a powerplant? Maybe a powerplant you can visit?

The inpredictable state of the ocean is making the experience different from time to time, sometimes the feeling of danger is present, sometimes a feeling of peace. When the ocean is playing up, you consentrate on the intensity of the situation, being safe and dry. When are the structures no longer a part of land, but become a part of the oceanbed? Degrees of isolation. When the water is coming in, the “towers” become islands. The waterflow is making some towers as islands, and flooding others. The elements are heavily anchored to the ground, sturdy to take on the oceanpower.

This structure is making a connection between ocean and land. The main concept is to offer a choice between shelter and being exposed. Several rooms both over and under the big plane provide different drgrees of shelter, view and hiding places. When standing on the edge of land, everything references to the vast horizon, that stretches as far as you can see. The planes are slanted “i forhold til” the horizon and the ground you`re walking on, referencing a rugged coastal landscape.

This simple tryout led me to my final project. It captures something I am interested in, an open space, no enclosures, simply abstract dynamic shapes in a big open landscape. I see it as a continuation of the Isolated paths model. It was one of the first I made, and though very simple, it captures something that I`m still interested in. A structure that in some way offer a choice. A choice of being sheltered or exposed. Several rooms both over and under the big plane provide different degrees of shelter, view and hiding places. What I am missing in the early model is a static layer, spaces that make you stop and stay, not only drift through. I want to combine the two, let the structure be both static and dynamic.  

I`ve introduced my nature phenomenon, and letting the structure be something that can take it on. The structure is making a connection between ocean and land. My project is standing at a rugged coast, partly on land, partly in the ocean.  You can enter it from all sides, finding your own space inside, either sheltered from the water,  seeking a view to it or getting a close encounter with it. 

All sides are slanted, letting the waves flow over them, often reaching the top and entering the structure. Suddenly the space you`re in gets flooded or separated from other spaces. When the ocean is too rough, you might be better off watching it from a distance. 

On the ground floor you walk on the rugged natural terrain of the site, letting the slanted walls protect you and isolating you from the outside and the waves. You can find a space of your own where you can feel protected or exposed to the force of the ocean. When the water sprays over the structure, you find your shelter behind one of the slanted walls or floors.  The main concept is to offer a choice between shelter and being exposed. When standing on the edge of land, everything references to the vast horizon, that stretches as far as you can see. The planes are slanted in relation to the horizon and the ground you`re walking on, referencing a rugged coastal landscape.  The first tryout has a sloping floor/roof dividing it into two levels, where you have a choice of hiding under it or exposing yourself to the elements on top of it. For the next model I tilted the  walls to also give them a roof/ shelter function.

Through the prosess I’ve looked at many sides of the phenomenon “isolation”, from   protection to sensory deprivation and estrangement. With my nature phenomenon water, I’ve added a potentially threatening environment and the theme “to be isolated from something” came in.

I’ve used my dream site, which is a stoney stretch of coastline by the North Sea, in the intriguing zone between land and water, where a constant battle between land and ocean takes place. I wanted to make a space in the middle of the drama, a space for hearing and watching what is going on around you.

Certain areas of this coast has no sheltering archipelago to protect it from the waves that have accumulated on their way to the shore. According to the weather situation, waves are crashing in with variable force, sometimes making it a harsh environment to be in. The appeal of this drama is very strong, though, and a structure that can provide shelter and add to the experience is a thought I have worked on for a long time.

The structure makes a link between land and water, and is anchored in both elements. It consists of large beams acting as a protective layer over the inner room and the ground underneath. Where its not covered, the construction suggests a space, cultivating a piece of the natural scenery around it. The outside spaces offer a variety of situations and experiences, ranging from great view and a risk of getting wet to more hidden and protected spots. The structure has a scale that relates to the big open landscape and the forces of the ocean, not the small individual in it. The enormous scale is adding to the feeling of isolation or estrangement, you feel alone, small and out of place. man versus machine.

The structure has a big slanted roof that isolates the person from the forces of the waves. It follows the direction ot the waves, letting them wash over it easily. You hear the water hitting the roof above you. Securely protected from the forces you can watch the water cascade down through the glass core of the structure and returning to the ocean underneath only to repeat.

The floor inside corresponds with the grid formed by the crossing beams on top of the structure, and is a slanting ramp that takes you inside. Compared to the overall size of the structure, the inside space is of a more human scale, providing a space for shelter and protection. A hideaway. The floor and roof is penetrated by a glass volume that lets water and light flow through. 

The roughness of the site calls for a heavy- duty material that weathers well, and where the tear and wear on the surfaces compliment the roughness of the site. I wanted to use a sturdy material that I assosiate with the ocean, like concrete (breakwaters and quais) or steel (tankers). I’m  inspired by large- scale steel constructions, like technical installations, oil rigs, ships and power plants.. As steel carries sound well, it’s  an intriguing thought to experience the thrust of the waves without seeing them. When you’re inside the isolated space in the heart of the structure, you hear the waves washing over it above you, but you don’t know their size or force, you can only guess. Your lack of visual contact with the outside deprives you of control of your surroundings.  

I see my final project as a step in a prosess, by no means an end result. I’ve worked with a theme and a force that intrigues me, and at the same time has a lot of challenges. A question I have thought about a lot is the relationship between the individual and the site, as well as the fragility of the site. Would it be right to build here? And if one could build in such a dramatic environment, what kind of supplement to the natural drama could a manmade structure possibly offer?