Sunday, 28 November 2010


Why don't we install more half-height doors, like the one I'm standing next to in this picture taken in a very old farm building? Not only do they look lovely and absurd, they also completely alter the perception of the room they lead into. Going through a very low door signifies intimacy, and makes the room feel very protected, a bit cocoon-like, a great feeling for certain rooms (though, perhaps not all). See Christopher Alexanders pattern "Low doorway" from the classic A Pattern Language: Towns, Buildings, Construction (Center for Environmental Structure Series).

Tuesday, 23 November 2010


`Try again: draw a long breath, and shut your eyes.'

Alice laughed. `There's no use trying,' she said `one ca'n't believe impossible things.'

`I daresay you haven't had much practice,' said the Queen. `When I was your age, I always did it for half-an-hour a day. Why, sometimes I've believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.'

Sunday, 21 November 2010


One important strategy for achieving a sustainable architecture, is to use materials that will age will dignity, perhaps even becoming more beautiful. In that way, materials won't have to be changed as often, and the energy asoociated with production and transport of new materials will be saved. While my friend Erlend and I were looking for a duffle coat for him on Friday, we visited the department store Sundt in Bergen, designed by architect Per Grieg. A venerable functionalist building from 1938, there's a generous use of marble in the interior, including original stairs of matt marble, and while I was walking down one of them, I noticed how the steps had been worn down by decades of use. However, in a natural material such as marble, wearing actually looks nice. Let's use materials that grow more beautiful with age, as a step on our way towards sustainability.

And this is blog post number 100! That must be quite a lot of text (mostly) about architecture, and it's been very much fun writing so far. Wish me luck on the next 100.

Friday, 19 November 2010


As mentioned earlier, I think false muntins are extremely tacky. I walk past these doors on my way to work, and one day it struck me how much I prefer the door that has somehow lost its false muntins. Have a look:

With (Yuck!)

Without (Not that bad, actually.)

Tuesday, 16 November 2010


Yesterday, I saw the great film A Single Man, directed by Tom Ford, based on the book by Christopher Isherwood, and I can recommend it to anyone. The protagonist and the people he interacts with are well-dressed and continuously surrounded by tasteful 60's interiors. At one point, I even thought "I wish I were a gay man in the 60's as well!", but then I changed my mind.

Friday, 12 November 2010


The last time I walked up to the area I'm designing a building for, I took a picture of this beautiful, fascinating phenomenon that I have yet to discover the name of. I like it anyway.

Wednesday, 10 November 2010


I love trails in the city. They're so humane, honest, simple and almost friendly. They're also a symbol of people taking charge of their surrounding, defying what has been decided for them by someone else, simply because they know their own surroundings better than them.

(I took the picture in Oslo on Monday, in Schandorffs plass, designed by landscape architects Ă˜stengen & Bergo AS (for some strange reason the website is only in Norwegian; sorry) and opened in September 2009. The building in the background is Deichman library, which opened in 1933.)

Tuesday, 9 November 2010


I have a confession to make. I'm very much prejudiced against real estate agents who utilize the typeface Comic Sans in their advertisements.

Saturday, 6 November 2010


Get wet, get cold, get self-contained. The top picture shows the area I'm working with, seen from afar. In our new course, TEOTWAWKI (The End Of The World As We Know It), we've been given one area each, with every area measuring 65 x 65 meters. Mine is this windy, rainy, lovely place up in Sandviksfjellet.  The course's subject is self-preservation in a post-apocalyptic world, so I'm having a lot of fun planning gardens, windwills, houses of goats and chickens and more. I've only been there once, so I hope to get up there next week. When I do that, I'll be able to made decent landscape model, and deciude where to put my gardens. Anyways, here are some pictures of my area.

Looking North.

Looking West.

Looking South (with rain on lens).

Looking East.
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