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Norway's 'House to Die In' Shot Down

Friday, August 31, 2018

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Architecture firm Snøhetta and Norwegian artist Bjarne Melgaard have been collaborating for nearly a decade on a project dubbed “A House to Die In,” and that collab seems to be coming to an end as city councilors in Oslo, Norway, have voted to stop the project.

The Project

The house—also seen as a sculpture—was slated to be made of charred wood, inspired by the Japanese practice of Shou Sugi Ban, and shaped with a series of triangles. The home would sit atop pillars shaped like woodland creatures; The New York Times has likened the design to a UFO.

The house was set to be located near famed Norwegian painter Edvard Munch’s former house and workshop as a tribute to the artist. Debate has raged over how the structure would impact the artist’s legacy, since the very environment is what inspired much of his art.

Snøhetta and the design team argued that the concerns about the environment are unfounded, because the house is slated for a plot of land where a building once stood.

City council disagreed.

“We want the site where the death house was intended to be placed to remain a green area for the benefit of the local population, and we encourage Bjarne to find a new site for the project," city councilors from the Labor, Socialist Left, Green and Progress parties said in a joint statement.

Melgaard said that he was not surprised with the verdict and has not commented on whether he will find a new site.

“There is great opposition to new things in Norway,” he said.


Tagged categories: Artists; Design

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