The project consists of a small sauna with dressing room in conjunction with a rest stop at the Leirhol summer farm in Vang, Valdres. It has a primary footprint of pproximately five square meters, and a heigth of approximately four and a half meters.

LOCATION: Leirholsstølen, Vang i Valdres, Norway.
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OWNER: Knut Lerhol
COURSE: Typology/Topology/Tectonics
NTNU COURSE LEADERS: August Schmidt, Arnstein Gilberg, Ina Samdal

Julie Allémann, Ana Baía, Quentin Desveaux, Roger Escorihuela, Rahel Haas, Anastasiia Ignatova, Feliks Ulvåen Isaksen, Agathe Ledoux, Louis Meny, Sebastià Mercadal, Adrienne Michels, Thuy Nguyen, Pierre-Louis Passard, Kristinn Pálsson, Benoît Perrier, Benedikt Profanter, Pedro Simões, Ninni Westerholm

ELDMØLLA Sauna by Arkitekt August Schmidt - Sheet2
© Arkitekt August Schmidt

For its main concept, the project draws inspiration from the local typology “Kvernhus” which is a small, traditional mill in conjunction with a stream or river, where water is channeled inside the structure to turn the millstones and grind grains into flour.

ELDMØLLA Sauna by Arkitekt August Schmidt - Sheet4
© Arkitekt August Schmidt

The organizational heart of the project is the position of the sauna at the top of the building. By giving the key function the most impressive placement, the lower level can be open and the room that forms on the ground floor is neither entirely enclosed nor fully exposed to the elements, but enters into a relationship with its surroundings, to the water that rushes underneath the building and the impressive mountain views that can be seen through the openings in the supporting frames. The hot air rises to the top, where internal and external cladding blocks out the elements, ensuring an authentic sauna experience.
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The bridge that stretches across the crack in the rock makes it possible for tourists and hikers to cross the stream of water, while simultaneously allowing water to flow within it, collecting in a small basin within the changing room of the sauna. The complete expression of the project is a structure that relates to the tall, open spaces between the mountains, and the energetic, rushing water that falls into the valley below.

ELDMØLLA Sauna by Arkitekt August Schmidt - Sheet5
© Arkitekt August Schmidt

The project was designed and planned by an international student group at NTNU in the period February-May, culminating in a two-week construction period where the students, together with teachers and the owner experienced the challenges of building in a remote location, and learning how to solve the unforeseen issues that arise when drawings and reality are in conflict with each other, as well as providing the students with a real-world relationship with construction and materials. The building is built in timber, with slender timber frames as the primary structural elements of the sauna.
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The bridge is constructed from massive wood elements fabricated by the students on the building site.

ELDMØLLA Sauna by Arkitekt August Schmidt - Sheet6
© Arkitekt August Schmidt

The owner was interested in a structure that could benefit from the natural surroundings of the site, its proximity to hiking paths and the posibilities for ice-climbing in the winter, to build something that could be enjoyed by tourists and farm workers both summer and winter.

Arkitekt August Schmidt

Dipl.Ing. Arkitekt August Schmidt get establishet as an Arkitekt i Trondheim in 2005. Founder of   Studio Sjellsand , his kompanie and workspace for other oppcoming arkitekts and artists . After finishing ingenering studies in Austria he worked in arichtekt offices in Austria ,Germany,  Kanada and Norway  where he settelt down in 1996 . Working for offices like Szyszkowitz Kowalski  ( Graz ), Auer Weber ( Stuttgart ) , Carmen Corneil ( Toronto ) were very importen du see how arkitektur can be developt and what faktors are importent in the prosees  . His eraly edujkasion as an masuneriy and carpenter shows in the love to handkraft and detaling  in his prosjekts. The link between Form construktion and matirial is the base for his teaching at NTNU and his  prosjekts which find the way to interantional press.  Smål selvbuild prosjekts that sergue for kvality in every inch  . To kreate god space for humans with solid konstrukjons , kvality material  which give form to the building  in a direkt way and in the same time reflecting buildinghistorie is importent in his work.


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