Fjordenhus / Olafur Eliasson and Sebastian Behmann with Studio Olafur Eliasson

Fjordenhus / Olafur Eliasson and Sebastian Behmann with Studio Olafur Eliasson

© Anders Sune Berg© Anders Sune Berg© David de Larrea Remiro© Anders Sune Berg+ 22

  • Project Architect:Caspar Teichgräber
  • Local Architect:Lundgaard & Tranberg Architecture
  • Landscape Architect:Vogt Landscape Ltd
  • Client:Kirk Kapital
  • Project Manager:Flemming Hoff Jakobsen, Hundsbæk & Henriksen A/S Construction
  • Manager:Jørn Andreasen, Hundsbæk & Henriksen A/S
  • Technical Supervision:Hundsbæk & Henriksen A/S
  • Engineering:Cowi A/S
  • Environmental Engineering:Transsolar Energietechnik GmbH
  • Consulting Engineeringvv:ArtEngineering GmbH
  • Acoustic Engineering:Gade & Mortensen Akustik A/S
  • Fire Counseling:Hundsbæk & Henriksen A/S
  • Safety:Eggersen Miljø & Sikkerhed APS
  • Artist:Olafur Eliasson
  • Architectural Team:Sebastian Behmann with Studio Olafur Eliasson
  • Design Team:VOGT
  • City:Vejle
  • Country:Denmark
More SpecsLess Specs
© Anders Sune Berg
© Anders Sune Berg


Vejle Fjord in Jutland stretches east from its head at the city of Vejle to its mouth at the Kattegat Sea. Fjordenhus stands in the water alongside Havneøen (The Harbour Island), a man-made island that was developed in response to a concept by Vejle Municipality to revitalise the harbour area, introducing important new residential components into a traditionally industrial environment. For those approaching from Vejle’s main urban axis, the building appears as the focal point, surrounded by water and with the Vejle Fjord Bridge in the background. The concrete and cobble-stone surfaces of the expansive plaza in front of the building are echoed in the design of Günther Vogt’s jetty, while the cylindrical forms and distinctive brickwork of Fjordenhus nod to the historical harbour typologies of warehouses and silos. Set against the backdrop of the fjord, the building itself breaks the smooth plane of the water.

© Anders Sune Berg
© Anders Sune Berg


Accessible by footbridge, the twenty-eight-metre-high building is formed by four intersecting cylinders with brick facades from which ellipsoidal negative spaces were removed to create complex curved forms and arched windows. The varying floor plans of the different levels are organized around circles and ellipses, with specially designed furniture and lights, and are connected by spiral staircases and round vestibules. The double-height ground floor, which is open to the public, is permeated by the fjord and contains two aqueous zones with site-specific artworks by Olafur Eliasson. The KIRK KAPITAL offices occupy the upper three floors. Perched atop the building is a green roof with vegetation and solar panels. By night, Fjordenhus is lit from within, resembling a lighthouse.

© David de Larrea Remiro
© David de Larrea Remiro


Classic Danish brick is the predominant material of the building’s inner and outer walls. The brick forms the smallest possible building unit and follows the organic shape of the building. Fjorden- hus’s intricate brickwork shapes visitors’ impression of the building as they approach. From afar, the building’s surface seems orderly, but upon closer inspection, the different shapes and slightly irregular staggering of the bricks’ depth reveals a lively, organic surface. The brickwork incorporates fifteen different tones of unglazed brick; additional colours of glazed bricks are integrated into the carved-out sections to produce colour fades – green from the bottom and blue from the top – that reflect the water and sky. In the stairwell, scattered silver bricks reflect the sunlight shining in from above. The bricks function not only aesthetically, but also technically: hollow ventilation bricks are placed throughout the walls to modulate both sound and temperature. Every corner, niche, and arc required an individual brick-laying solution; each brick was specially t into the complex curvature of the concrete walls, the overall brickwork lying flush with the curved steel frames and glass elements of the facade.

© Anders Sune Berg
© Anders Sune Berg

Floors & Ceilings

The floors and ceilings of Fjordenhus are formed by white concrete slabs, creating spaces 3.2 metres in height on each level. They conceal the distribution of technical infrastructure such as the heating and cooling systems. The grid pattern of cut-out negative circular volumes in the ceiling reduces the overall weight of the ceiling. These hollows also serve to hold light fixtures and modulate the acoustics of the space. Pietra Piasentina stone was used to cover all the floors. Unlike classic granite stones, Pietra Piasentina can only be found in boulders quarried from the hills of Friuli, Italy. 

© Anders Sune Berg
© Anders Sune Berg

Windows & Doors

The double-curved, 3D-formed windows precisely follow the geometry of Fjordenhus. Steel frames span several floors of the building, while the window voids form the main element of the facade. In some areas, rotating doors were introduced to accommodate the geometrical challenges of the building’s overall shape. All of the doors and windows are tilted; by design, the walls contain no right angles. 

© Anders Sune Berg
© Anders Sune Berg


The kilim carpets, each with a diameter of 9.4 metres and placed in the centres of the drums, were handwoven in Varanasi, India. Looms were custom-built so the carpets could be woven seamlessly, and each carpet comes in a different monochrome colour. The smaller, elliptical entrance rooms linking the stairwells to the main office spaces are fitted with hand-tufted carpets. All the carpets have been deliberately designed to be sound absorbant. 

© Anders Sune Berg
© Anders Sune Berg


The office spaces on the building’s first, second, and third floors feature several custom-made furniture pieces designed by Olafur Eliasson and Studio Olafur Eliasson. Wood was introduced as the dominant material for the additional built-in cabinets, bathrooms, kitchens, and staircases in the private spaces.

© Anders Sune Berg
© Anders Sune Berg

Project gallery

See allShow less

Project location

Address:Havneøen 1, 7100 Vejle, Denmark

Click to open map
Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address.
About this office
Cite: "Fjordenhus / Olafur Eliasson and Sebastian Behmann with Studio Olafur Eliasson" 10 Jun 2018. ArchDaily. Accessed . <> ISSN 0719-8884
© Anders Sune Berg

海峡屋 Fjordenhus / 奥拉维尔·埃利亚松工作室 + 巴斯蒂安·贝曼

You've started following your first account!

Did you know?

You'll now receive updates based on what you follow! Personalize your stream and start following your favorite authors, offices and users.