Tham & Videgård Arkitekter / SWE
Mirrorcube : A contextual reading
The issue we would like to address, in relation to a possible Nordic architecture, is the relationship between nature and architecture. Beginning with our interest in multiple contexts, this relationship is an investigation we pursue in our practice and in every project. It has resulted in a contextual approach where the analysis of a site and the interpretation of a functional program can lead to an architecture that is mixed, intertwined, and integrated with nature.
As a vehicle to communicate this relationship we have chosen to use our project for a Tree Hotel in Harads. It is a minimal structure that makes it possible to rest in the midst of a deep wild forest in the far north of Sweden. The reduced architecture we proposed, the Mirrorcube, is a very small space that depends entirely on the quality of its surroundings, the light conditions, and the strong material presence of the forest. The tall pines constitute its surroundings and also carry the room itself. Our Light House presented at the Nordic Pavilion is a distilled version of the observations that inspired the Tree Hotel; a simultaneously direct and conceptual relation to nature, the Nordic light, the trees, and the sky.
The built Mirrorcube is a reflective box on a forested hill, close to the Arctic Circle. It is a shelter up in the trees, a lightweight aluminum structure hung around a tree trunk, measuring only 4x4x4 meters and clad in mirrored glass. The exterior reflects the surroundings and the sky, creating a camouflaged refuge. The construction alludes to man’s relationship to nature: how we equip ourselves with sophisticated technology to deal with harsh climates, but also have the desire to explore nature at its most wild and fundamental level. The Mirrorcube becomes the physical expression of these ideas, a dream of a secluded hide-out away from civilization.

Photo: Ilari Järvinen
More information about the exhibition and the other models