Laufskálavarða, service house, nominated to the Icelandic Design Awards 2022

October 29th, 2022

Laufskálavarða, service house, by Stáss architects nominated to the Icelandic Design Awards 2022. The awards will take place on November 17th in Gróska. 

From the jury:
Laufskálavarða, service house, is a modest man-made construction in the Icelandic nature – without competing with it, and without deflecting from the natural environment. The house was designed by STÁSS architects. It is only 30m2 and stands discreetly in the sands of Mýrdalssandur, close to the main road. The creation originates in the need for practical facilities and results in a holistic and functional rest stop in the vast open landscape. This compound of different utilities of only a few square meters consists of toilet facilities, washing facilities, a viewpoint, a bench for resting, and facilities for cyclists.

The house is especially practical in its role of bringing attention to nature through simultaneously giving access to it and protecting it from trampling. Visitors can use the house to seek cover from the weather or to orient themselves on the viewpoint on its roof, while enjoying the sight of the nearby glacier Mýrdalsjökull and the volcano Katla. The design is professional and exemplary for this type of facility which could be applied in many other places in Iceland.

About the project:
The aim of the design of Laufskálavarða, service building, was to bring this necessary service of the highway to a higher level. The building intertwines different possibilities of use, i.e. toilet facilities, viewing platform, washing facilities, rest bench and facilities for cyclists. All these different elements are intertwined into a whole. The requirement is made for the architecture to be not only a framework for facilities but also an integral part of its environment and bring the user's natural experience to a higher level, which is in harmony with the location, nature and the view.

About the designers:
Stáss Architects is an architectural practice based in Reykjavík, Iceland founded in 2008 by architects  Árnýj  Þórarinsdóttir and Helga Guðrún Vilmundardóttir. Árný graduated as MA, Master of Arts in Architecture from Arkitektskolen in Aarhus in June 2007 from the department "Architecture and Aesthetics". Helga Guðrún graduated as MA, Master of Arts in Architecture from Det Kongelige kunstakademiet arkitektskole in January 2008 from the department "Architecture/Development in cities”.

The jury of the Icelandic Design Awards are Sigríður Sigurjónsdóttir, designer and director of the Museum of Design and Applied arts, chairman, María Kristín Jónsdóttir, designer, vice chairman, Ragna Fróðadóttir, designer, Þorleifur Gunnar Gíslason, designer, Arna Sigríður Mathiesen, architect, Margrét Kristín Sigurðardóttir for the Federation of Icelandic Industries and Daniel Byström, designer and Design Nation.

The Icelandic Design Award honours the best Icelandic design and architecture annually. The importance of design in our society, culture and business has been growing steadily, and it is therefore vital to increase the understanding of good design and highlight the value of quality. 

Celebrating achievement and excellence, the Icelandic Design Award is given to a designer, a team, a studio or an architect in recognition of an outstanding new work, object, project or collection. The award is given to a recent project that demonstrates creative thinking, resourceful solutions, thorough presentation and professional methodology throughout the design process. Best investment in design recognises successful investment in design or architecture in the past year. It is awarded over to a company that has incorporated design in the core of its operations to create value and increase competitiveness. 

This week we will be announcing the nominations for the year 2022 and the award ceremony will take place on November 17th. Stay tuned!

The Icelandic Design Award is established by Iceland Design and Architecture in collaboration with the Iceland University of the Arts, the Museum of Design and Applied Art, Promote Iceland, and SI - the Federation of Icelandic Industries.

October 29th, 2022
Álfrún Pálsdóttir


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