The holiday home built by Lund Hagem Architects on the little island of Lyngholmen in Norway is clearly intended to blend into the landscape, with structural materials and cladding imitating the shapes and colours of nature. The project fits into its surroundings with that respect that we now tend to consider a sort of sustainability, in the broadest sense of the term. A passive form of sustainability, which is placed in a particular location to allow people to appreciate its particular nature, figuratively enriching the natural scenery.
Norwegian architectural studio Lund Hagem developed the concept underlying the new home on the basis of this attitude of self-denial, making it a “counter-architecture”, a volume that finds out everything there is to know about a place and its history in order to hide in that place. The lot measuring about 4000 sqm on the island of Lyngholmen, in the Aust Agder archipelago in southern Norway, is a rocky piece of land sloping down to the sea to the south, its harshness mitigated by low vegetation between the rocks, providing shelter from the wind.There was a house on the site built during the 1960s, the size of which was the only limitation to be met in demolishing and reconstructing the home.
The layout was therefore developed on the basis of a predefined surface area of 100 sqm, distributed over a single level, requiring the organisation of the home to make the most of the available space. The home is divided into two wings: one to the south, containing the living area and the master bedroom, and one to the north, containing the children’s rooms and a bigger room for guests. One of the ways of making the most of the available space was to eliminate hallways. In the southern wing the entrance leads directly to the master bedroom and the living room, while in the northern wing the bedrooms and bathroom have a separate entrance, and a covered hallway links the portions of the building with each other and with a concrete patio where there are tables and chairs for enjoying the view of the landscape.
The volume is drawn between the curves of the land and surmounted by a single concrete roof, the shape of which in turn reproduces the gentle form of the rocks on which it is anchored. The home seeks dialogue with the landscape of which it clearly forms a part, through walls of glass overlooking the bay and big doors opening onto the patio. The northern wall, less exposed to the sun, is covered with ash panels, which are also used in the indoor floors, revealing its more introverted, hermetic nature.
With its light section (27 cm) distributed over a vast expanse, the roof conceals and protects the home, reducing its impact on the landscape to a minimum, further mitigated by the white colour of the concrete, reflected in the pigmentation of the rock. When seen from outside, the house fits perfectly into the natural landscape, while for the people inside it, it frames the view and interprets its context.
Design: Lund Hagem architects
Location: Lillesand (Norway)
Structural design: eStatikk
Total useable floor space: 100 sqm
Lot size: 4000 sqm
Project start date: 2008
Completion of work: 2012
Handmade wooden frames
Concrete roof (27 cm thick) on VIP vacuum insulating panels (4 cm thick)
Reinforced concrete structure, steel columns 100 mm in diameter
Inside walls covered with ash wood
White concrete and ash flooring
Photos: © Lund Hagem architects