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Sverre Fehn

Spotlight: Sverre Fehn

06:00 - 14 August, 2017
Spotlight: Sverre Fehn, Nordic Pavilion in Venice. Image ©  Åke E:son Lindman
Nordic Pavilion in Venice. Image © Åke E:son Lindman

1997 Pritzker Prize laureate Sverre Fehn (August 14th 1924 – February 23rd 2009) was a leader in Post World War II Scandinavian architecture. “His work has an intuitive confidence in how to use the Nordic landscape and its particular light conditions within the built culture, and yet throughout his career each period has reflected a refined sensitivity to international changes and attitudes in architecture,” said his close collaborator Per Olaf Fjeld. “It can be compared to a poetic work conceived on an isolated mountain by a writer with an uncanny, intuitive sense of what is going on in the towns below.” [1]

AD Classics: Nordic Pavilion in Venice / Sverre Fehn

09:00 - 30 March, 2016
AD Classics: Nordic Pavilion in Venice / Sverre Fehn, The Nordic Pavilion (Giardini, Venice). Image © Åke E:son Lindman
The Nordic Pavilion (Giardini, Venice). Image © Åke E:son Lindman

Three were originally invited to draw up plans for a ‘Nordic’ pavilion: the Finnish partnership Reima and Raili Pietilä, Sverre Fehn from Norway, and the Swede, Klas Anshelm. Following the selection of Fehn’s proposal in 1959, Gotthard Johansson wrote in the Svenska Dagbladet of the project’s “stunning simplicity [...], without too many architectural overtones”[1] – a proposal for a space able to unite a triumvirate of nations under one (exceptional) roof.

The Nordic Pavilion (Giardini, Venice). Image © Åke E:son Lindman The Nordic Pavilion (Giardini, Venice). Image © Åke E:son Lindman The Nordic Pavilion (Giardini, Venice). Image © Åke E:son Lindman The Nordic Pavilion (Giardini, Venice). Image © Åke E:son Lindman +30

AD Classics: Nordic Pavilion at Expo '70 / Sverre Fehn

04:00 - 22 March, 2016
AD Classics: Nordic Pavilion at Expo '70 / Sverre Fehn, Courtesy of Norwegian National Museum
Courtesy of Norwegian National Museum

Though architectural history is replete with bricks, stones, and steel, there is no rule that states that architecture must be ‘solid’. Sverre Fehn, one of the most prominent architects of postwar Norway, regularly made use of heavy materials like concrete and stone masonry in his projects [1]. In this way, his proposal for the Nordic Pavilion at the Osaka World Expo in 1970 could be seen as an atypical exploration of a more delicate structure. Representing a very different aspect of ‘Modernity’ than his usual work, Fehn’s “breathing balloon” pavilion stands not only in contradiction to Fehn’s design canon, but to that of traditional architecture as a whole.

Courtesy of Norwegian National Museum Courtesy of Norwegian National Museum Courtesy of Norwegian National Museum Courtesy of Norwegian National Museum +10

'In Therapy' – the Nordic Contribution to the 2016 Venice Biennale

04:00 - 20 January, 2016

The Nordic nations—Finland, Norway and Sweden—have reached a pivotal point in their collective, and individual, architectural identities. The Grandfathers of the universal Nordic style—including the likes of Sverre Fehn, Peter Celsing, Gunnar Asplund, Sigurd Lewerentz, Alvar Aalto, and Eero Saarinen—provided a foundation upon which architects and designers since have both thrived on and been confined by. The Nordic Pavilion at the 2016 Venice Biennale—directed by Alejandro Aravena—will be the moment to probe: to discuss, argue, debate and challenge what Nordic architecture really is and, perhaps more importantly, what it could be in years to come.

We're asking for every practice (and individual) across the world who have built work in Finland, Norway and Sweden in the past eight years to submit their project(s) and be part of the largest survey of contemporary Nordic architecture ever compiled.

Update: the Open Call for In Therapy closed on the 24th January 2016.

Sverre Fehn’s Drawings for Venice's Nordic Pavilion To Be Exhibited in Oslo

00:00 - 16 June, 2014
© Ferruzzi
© Ferruzzi

Norwegian architect and Pritzker Laureate Sverre Fehn’s original drawings for the Nordic Pavilion in Venice are to be presented alongside Ferruzzi’s monochromatic photographs of the building in an exhibition at the National Museum of Architecture in Oslo. Venice: Fehn’s Nordic Pavilion documents the incredible task undertaken by Fehn who, at the age of thirty-four, won the competition to design the pavilion and subsequently won international acclaim when the building was completed in 1962.

The Pavilion at the 2014 Venice Biennale. Image © James Taylor-Foster The Pavilion at the 2014 Venice Biennale. Image © James Taylor-Foster The Pavilion at the 2014 Venice Biennale. Image © James Taylor-Foster The Pavilion at the 2014 Venice Biennale. Image © James Taylor-Foster +8

Sverre Fehn 1924-2009

12:30 - 25 February, 2009

Two days ago, norwegian architect Sverre Fehn died at 84 years old.