Norwegian National Operahouse Building. Oslo, Snohetta Design.

Iranzu Guijarro

ÖÖ: Was it a dream! World Capital of Design projects.

I enjoyed 3 conferences about 3 Architecture Studio (Finnish Tuomas Toivonen NOW , Estonian Ralf looke, Salto and Norwegian Martin Gram, Snohetta Design) Helsinki 2012, The world Capital of Design project is coming up…YESS!

I would like to introduce you one of Snohetta Design Project in Oslo! The Norwegian National Opera and Ballet House. Huge white – Frozen Glacier in the middle of the city! Inside the building is full of wooden structures which represents the warm environment.


The conceptual basis of the competition, and the final building, is a combination of this three elements – The wave wall, the factory and the carpet. Snohetta Design.

”The wave wall” Opera and ballet are young artforms in Norway. These artforms envolve in an international setting . The Bjørvika peninsula is part of a harbour city, which is historically the meeting point with the rest of the world.. The dividing line between the ground ’here’ and the water ‘there’is both a real and a symbolic threshold. This threshold is realised as a large wall on the line of the meeting between land and sea, Norway and the world, art and everyday life.

”The Factory” A detailed brief was developed as a basis for the competition. Snøhetta proposed that the production facitities of the operahouse should be realised as a self contained, rationally planned ‘factory’. This factory should be both functional and flexible during the planning phase as well as in later use. This flexibility has proved to be very important during the planning phase: a number of rooms and romm groups have been adjusted in collaboration with the end user. These changes have improved the buildings functionality without affecting the architecture.

”The Carpet” The competion brief stated that the operahouse should be of high architectural quality and should be monumental in it’s expression. One idea stood out as a legitimation of this monumentality: The concept of togetherness, joint ownership, easy and open access for all. To achieve a monumentality based on these notions we wished to make the opera accessible in the widest possible sense, by laying out a ‘carpet’ of horizontal and sloping surfaces on top of the building. This carpet has been given an articulated form, related to the cityscape. Monumentality is achieved through horizontal extension and not verticality.


Iranzu Guijarro

Iranzu Guijarro

Iranzu Guijarro

Iranzu Guijarro

Iranzu Guijarro

Iranzu Guijarro

Iranzu Guijarro

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