Norway is a Scandinavian nation with rich natural landscapes such as forest, mountains, coastal areas and the presence of glaciers. Over the years, the Architecture of Norway became even more diverse with various influences from its Viking history, climatic environment, and cultural shift. Following many different movements of the era, Norway has a wide range of buildings that records the architectural endeavors attempted by its architects, including the Art Nouveau style and Modernism styles. Today, many Norwegian architects have also created masterpieces by carefully considering new trends such as using aesthetics to improve the well-being of inhabitants and the need to mitigate environmental impacts. 

Norway has also created its form of architectural style and is also a leading leader in producing sustainable timber buildings that are aesthetically pleasing for both private and public uses. They appreciate the beauty of timber and its beneficial properties to its environment and people. Their architecture blends seamlessly with its environment using new and old construction methods. And because of their innovative approach to architecture, many local architects gained international fame for their works found within Norway and all over the world. This article will be introducing 10 Norwegian Architects and their famous works produced over the years.  

1.Geir Grung

Geir Grung started his architectural firm in 1950. When Grung started his architecture career, Norway was undergoing industrialization in building the construction sector. Therefore, his projects involve many hydro-power developments. He was a modernist and was part of an architect group known as Team X (Also known as Team 10 or Team Ten). 

He also actively joined the International congresses of Modern Architecture (CIAM). Røldal Kraftverk’s office and workshop building and Tysso II Kraftverk are some of his works.

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A Picture of Architect Geir Grung. ©Norsk Kunstnerleksikon – ©Store Norske Leksikon
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A Picture of Røldal Kraftverk office and workshop building. ©Wikipedia
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A Picture of Tysso ll Power Plant. ©Norsk Kunstnerleksikon – ©Store Norske Leksikon

2. Jan Inge Hovig

Jan Inge Hovig oversaw the reconstruction of Narvik in 1947 as a city architect. After establishing his practice and forming various partnerships with other architects, he has done many projects. At the 1968 Summer Olympics in Mexico City, he represented Norway at the Architecture Exhibition. His famous work includes the Arctic Cathedral (Tromsøysund Kirke) that was completed in 1965. The church was mainly constructed using cast-in-place aluminium-coated concrete panels.

A Picture of Tysso ll Power Plant. © Norsk Kunstnerleksikon – ©Store Norske Leksikon- Sheet1
A Picture of Architect Jan Inge Hovig and his Wife. ©VG
A Picture of Tysso ll Power Plant. © Norsk Kunstnerleksikon – ©Store Norske Leksikon- Sheet2
A Picture of the Arctic Cathedral. ©Wikipedia
A Picture of Tysso ll Power Plant. © Norsk Kunstnerleksikon – ©Store Norske Leksikon- Sheet3
A Picture of the Arctic Cathedral. ©Wikipedia

3. Kirsten Sand

Kirsten Sand was the first woman to graduate from the Norwegian Institute of Technology with full technical competence in Architecture. Until World War two, she established her own architecture company which primarily focuses on designing private homes. But after the war, she participated in various reconstruction projects of destroyed properties in Norway from 1952 to 1966. Her experimental house The Kirsten Sand House was designed with light wooden platforms to ensure little construction materials were used. It was a crucial and cost-effective feature for households then, especially after the war.  

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A Picture of Architect Kristen Sand. ©Wikipedia
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A Picture of Architect Kristen Sand. ©Wikiwand
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A Picture of Architect Kristen Sand. ©Wikimedia Commons

4. Kjell Kosberg

Kjell Kosberg established his architecture firm Kosbergs Arkitektkontor in 1986. In 2002, he designed the Scandic Seilet Hotel located in Molde, Norway. Formally known as the Rica Seilet Hotel, the Scandic Seilet infrastructure is the tallest hotel in the town. It is also a popular local attraction with various facilities for the visitors to enjoy while viewing the scenic view of the Moldefjorden. 

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A Picture of Architect Kjell Kosberg. ©Wikipedia
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A Picture of the Scandic Seilet Hotel. ©Wikipedia
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A Picture of the Scandic Seilet Hotel. ©Wikipedia

5. Kjetil Trædal Thorsen

Kjetil Trædal Thorsen is the founder of the Architecture company Snøhetta. He was in charge of many projects in Norway and worldwide. One of his most recent projects is The Oslo Opera house. Also known as The Norwegian Opera and Ballet, the arts complex was completed in 2007 after Snøhetta won the competition entry with four diagrams showcasing its basic design concept “The Wave Wall”. The most outstanding feature is the roof also acts as a plaza, inviting people to enjoy the Oslo panoramic scenery from above. The final Contemporary Style building won various international awards and prizes such as the World Architecture Festival Cultural Award in 2008 and Mies van der Rohe award in 2009.  

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A Picture of Architect Kjetil Trædal Thorsen. ©reSITE
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A Picture of the Oslo Opera House. ©John Stefanidis – ©Blogger
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A Picture of the Oslo Opera House. ©Archdaily

6. Knut Hjeltnes

Knut Hjeltnes graduated from the Norwegian Institute of Technology. He is also an appointed professor at the Oslo School of Architecture and Design. His works include House Sømme, Weekend House Straume and Summer House Grøgaard and Slaattelid.  

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A Picture of House Sømme. ©Archdaily
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A Picture of Weekend House Straume. ©Archdaily
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A Picture of the Summer House Grøgaard and Slaattelid. ©Archdaily

7. Kristin Jarmund

Kristin Jarmund started her architectural studio Kristin Jarmund Arkitekter in 1985. Her projects are known to simplify complex issues with form and function. The use of design language is coherent as she takes note of the color used and paid attention to details. Therefore, many of her works are classified as “new functionalism”. Another factor that is considered in her works is the emphasis given to interior spaces. The term she spoke of “Interior Façade” refers to equal importance for both the interior design of spaces and the exterior façade of the building. Her works include Nydalen Metro Station and the Råholt Secondary School. 

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A Picture of Architect Kristin Jarmund. ©kj-a.no
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A Picture of Nydalen Metro Station Extension. ©Archdaily
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A Picture of Råholt Secondary School. ©Archdaily

8. Lilla Hansen

Lilla Georgine Hansen was the first female architect in Norway. Before she and started her architectural firm in 1912, she had her internship with Architects Halfdan Berle and Martin Nyrop. She also designed many villas, hospitals, and student accommodations for women. Her famous work includes the Vacation Home on Nesøya in Asker for Norwegian Physician and Professor of Pediatrics Theodor Frølich and Trosterudveien 10 in Oslo for Lil and Nils Roede.

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A Picture of Architect Lilla Hansen. ©Wikipedia
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A Picture of Vacation Home on Nesøya in Asker for Norwegian Physician and Professor of Pediatrics Theodor Frølich. ©Wikipedia
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A Picture of Trosterudveien 10 in Oslo for Lil and Nils Roede. ©Wikiwand

9. Nils Slaatto and Kjell Lund

Nils Slaatto is one of the most influential and famous architects in Norway. He has developed Norwegian architecture with his fellow graduate Kjell Lund. After winning a competition entry together, the architects opened their architectural firm Lund & Slaatto Arkitekter AS in 1958 with a long partnership of thirty years. Together, they built many infrastructures such as the St Magnus Catholic Church. The modern construction of St Magnus Catholic Church illuminates spaces using continuous skylights in a slit form while maintaining the formality of the traditional church rooms. 

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A Picture of St Magnus Catholic Church (St Magnus Kirke). ©Isa.no
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A Picture of St Magnus Catholic Church. ©Isa.no
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A Picture of St Magnus Catholic Church skylight. ©Isa.no

10. Sverre Fehn

Sverre Fehn studied under Architect Arne Korsmo during his time at Oslo School of Architecture and Design. He won the competition for the Museum Building for the Sandvig Collections at Maihaugen in Lillehammer with Architect Geir Grung in 1949. Later in 1950, he joined Progressive Architects Group Oslo, Norway (PAGON) to promote and create modern architecture led by Arne Korsmo. He moved to Paris to work for Jean Prouvé and met Le Corbusier during his time there. In 1954, he opened his practice in Oslo, Norway. His projects include the Norwegian Glacier Museum and the Aukrust Centre.  

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A Picture of Norwegian Glacier Museum. ©Wikipedia
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A Picture of Norwegian Glacier Museum. ©Architecture Revived
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A Picture of Aukrust Centre. ©JOSH MINGS STUDIO
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A Picture of Aukrust Centre. ©JOSH MINGS STUDIO

References:

http://johnstefanidis.blogspot.com/2013/09/architecture-kjetil-thorsen-and-craig.html

http://joshuamings.com/newsite/2011/07/27/aukrustsenteret-alvdal-sverre-fehn/

http://kj-a.no/

https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Kirsten_Sand_huset_Mellomveien_130.jpg

https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scandic_Seilet

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arctic_Cathedral

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geir_Grung_(architect)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jan_Inge_Hovig

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kirsten_Sand

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kjell_Kosberg

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kjell_Lund

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kjetil_Tr%C3%A6dal_Thorsen

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Knut_Hjeltnes_(architect)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kristin_Jarmund

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lilla_Hansen

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nils_Slaatto

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Norwegian_Glacier_Museum

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oslo_Opera_House

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sverre_Fehn

https://nkl.snl.no/Geir_Grung 

https://no.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jan_Inge_Hovig

https://no.wikipedia.org/wiki/Seilet_hotell

https://www.archdaily.com/32879/raholt-school-kristin-jarmund-architects

https://www.archdaily.com/799165/the-next-great-public-spaces-will-be-indoors-are-architects-prepared

https://www.archdaily.com/880963/nydalen-metro-station-extension-kristin-jarmund-architects

https://www.architecturerevived.com/norwegian-glacier-museum-fjaerland/

https://www.hjeltnes.as/

https://www.lsa.no/st-magnus-kirke

https://www.resite.org/speakers/kjetil-traedal-thorsen

https://www.vg.no/rampelys/bok/i/pz8GV/ingrid-espelid-hovig-om-sorgene-kan-ikke-legge-seg-ned-og-doe

https://www.visitnorway.com/listings/aukrustsenteret/8561/

https://www.visitnorway.com/listings/norwegian-glacier-museum/5016/

https://www.visitnorway.com/places-to-go/fjord-norway/northwest/listings-northwest/scandic-seilet-hotel/1024/

https://www.wikiwand.com/en/Kirsten_Sand

https://www.wikiwand.com/en/Lilla_Hansen

Shu Han Janeen Seah
Author

Janeen is currently pursuing an Undergraduate Architecture degree in the United Kingdom. She is very interested in exploring infrastructure developments over the years, analyzing historical design features, and studying new architecture trends with regards to the local lifestyle. She is open to new ideas, expanding her knowledge, and always trying to improve herself whenever she can.

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