Jensen & Skodvin in Nøstetangenrommet

The exhibition is a presentation of a pioneering summer home in Western Norway. Simultaneously with the exhibition, a publication about the building in the asBUILT series will be published by Pax Forlag.

Character tips

This exhibition presents a building designed by the architects Jensen & Skodvin. Drammens Museum has arranged architecture exhibitions before, but this is the first time architecture is presented in the solo project in Nøstetangenrommet. The exhibition program is curated by Åsmund Thorkildsen and paintings, sculpture, installation, photography, video, dance (video), textiles, ceramics, glass, fashion and metal art have previously been shown there. And now it's finally architecture. The only criterion for artists being invited to exhibit in the Nøstetangen room is that they are outstanding performers in their field. The point is to try out how an exhibition of art made in our time can play with and against the beautiful 18th century objects that the room houses on a daily basis. An exhibition here is always a conscious staging, where the meeting between different times and expressions should have a meaningful and enriching experience and reflection.

Jensen & Skodvin arkitekter belongs to a group of Norwegian architectural firms that have an international significance. Not only have they designed facilities in countries such as Austria, Japan and China, their work is also published internationally. Especially in Japan, there is great interest in their work. Among the most famous buildings are Mortensrud Church (2002), the Cistercian Monastery for the Sisters of Mary on the island of Tautra in the Trondheim Fjord (2005), Spa Hotel in Bad Gleichenberg in Austria (2008), Gudbrandsjuvet Landscape Hotel and service building and viewing platform in the same place (2008). They have several projects in Norwegian tourist routes in addition to Gudbrandsjuvet, such as Liasanden picnic area and viewing platforms on Ropeid and Mefjellet. They have designed the premises for DOGA, Norwegian architecture and design center, a rehabilitation project from 2005 that received a great reception at the time. In addition, they have designed some original detached houses, residential complexes and two metro stations in Oslo (Sinsen and Storo stations).

But, perhaps their most sensational building is Sommarbustad in Storfjord on Sunnmøre. It is this building, which after several years of drawing process and construction was completed in 2013, that is the theme of this exhibition. The goal for Drammens Museum has been to be able to create the ultimate architectural exhibition. The problem was: How to give as comprehensive a representation as possible of something that is located on a mountain ledge 70 meters above a Vestlandsfjord and which is a very complex structure, in the form of an exhibition in a museum? To achieve this, the building must first be of international top class. Secondly, the room had to be suitable, something the Nøstetangen room is with its condensed atmosphere: One building, one room.

The objects in the Nøstetangen room are intended for use and they are therefore on a human scale, adapted to the hand and the close social relations. A building like Sommarbustad is the framework around human life, which is also lived on a human scale. In order to be able to re-present a building, this therefore had to be included in the thinking during the planning of the exhibition on a scale in relation to the spectator. That is why a large model has been made, made by Erik Schmidt in Hamburg, one of Europe's leading model builders, who also made all the models for the museum's Bjarne Thinn Syvertsen exhibition in 2008. The model of Sommarbustad is so large that it was just possible to get it into the building by a margin of two centimeters and door leaves hinged off to provide the necessary space. The model has an order of magnitude equal to large utensils and furniture. The audience gets up close and thus gets a first-class opportunity to look at the model on a scale they can relate to in three dimensions, but within the well-known form of observation and interaction. This alternation in the audience between sight, brain and body in motion, it is important to play on in an exhibition context. That the objects that are permanently exhibited in Nøstetangenrommet are a result of natural resources (sand, water and firewood) and a technological production process, it will also be able to illuminate the material and procedural in a building that to the extent relates to and interprets this unique the plot deep in a Vestlandsfjord.

To show the building's sensational - simply sublime - situation and atmosphere, the exhibition shows 12 large color photographs, taken by photographer Nils Vik. These photographs are copied in a format as large as technology and space allow. Because these are so large, the audience will be able to experience some of the visual experience you have when you are in the summer home itself.

This place is so special and unusual that it opens up for a poetic consideration. It lies between the fjord surface and the sky on a pine-clad ledge against dramatic mountains. In order to experience it as a large bird or an eagle - and there are eagles in this landscape - we have asked artist Anders Eiebakke to create a work of art that is a cinematic interpretation of Sommarbustad. The film is shown on a relatively large screen and we can follow the bird's eye view as the drone with camera eye takes off from the national road that goes on a ledge in the slope, flies up towards Sommarbustad and begins to circle around and over the building. The drone flies high, pulls out over the fjord and slides inwards again to end its flight inside the building.

On its own screen is a slide show with photographs of the plot before construction, some photos taken during construction, as well as a selection of the drawings. The drawings are handwritten comments and detailed remarks in ink and this gives an insight into the dynamics of the creative process, a process that continues throughout the construction period. There are well over 1000 drawings for this complex structure. In the next room, five large binders have been placed with photostat copies of as many as 1052 drawings. Here, the public is given a unique opportunity to get to know the building down to the smallest detail.

Jensen & Skodvin architects come from the Knut Knutsen and Sverre Fehn tradition in Norwegian modern architecture. But they also have a side view of international modernism, led by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe. Their distinctive feature, however, comes from the fact that they work on the basis of the new regionalism's use of local landscape understanding and the materials of the place. Their buildings show a distinctly Nordic sensitivity, with a clear side view to Japanese tradition and American modernism as it was developed in the organic architecture of the Midwest and West Coast in the early 20th century.

The summer house is built on poles, the plot is virtually untouched and there are almost no felled trees. Part of the mountain behind forms the protective 6 meter high back wall in the living room. The rock wall is inside the room! The architects have created a varied light climate that gives different moods as the day and season change. The materials are wood, concrete, iron and glass. This unique structure also shows a new expressionist tendency. Structure both in plane and section is formed at the meeting point between intersecting diagonal lines which in turn show a star or crystal structure. This star is gripped high above the fjord and the building is both poetic, respectful and overwhelming, in short a work of art. Sommarbustad is an essay in pioneering, experimental architecture. In connection with the exhibition, the publishing house PAX publishes a monograph on Jensen & Skodvins Sommarbustad in the asBUILT series, where the building is interpreted architecturally and is presented with hundreds of pictures and drawings.

Åsmund Thorkildsen

museum director

Press release

Drammens Museum invites the press to see the exhibition Jensen & Skodvin in Nøstetangenrommet at Drammens Museum, Thursday 27 November at 1700.

This is an architectural exhibition out of the ordinary. The sensationally original building Sommarbustad (2007-2013) is presented through photographs, models, films and drawings in a framework of first-class art industry from the end of the 18th century.

Attached Tips on Signs provide more comprehensive information about the building and the exhibition project.

In connection with the exhibition, the publisher PAX publishes a book about the building in the series asBUILT

The leader behind the team at Jensen & Skodvin, Jan Olav Jensen, will be present at the press screening.

For additional information about the exhibition, please contact the exhibition's curator, Åsmund Thorkildsen on telephone 97 50 04 45.             

Photographs: Nils Vik

A cinematic interpretation of the building: Anders Eiebakke

Model: Erik Schmidt, Hamburg

Opening Thursday 27 November at 19.00

The exhibition is opened by Martin Braathen, editor of Arkitektnytt.

Serving in the Lyche pavilion from 20.00

Monday to Friday 11.00 - 15.00

Wednesday 11.00 – 18.00

Saturday 11.00 – 16.00 (free admission)

Sunday 11.00 – 16.00