During the international summer school 2017, promoted by the Estonian Academy of Arts, students built a sauna in the Sooma National Park, Estonia, as a response to the changing and challenging environment of the area. The sauna is called Vala (“pour” in English) and derives its name from the built-in shower facility that gathers rainwater falling on the roof.
Building a sauna embraces both architecture, interior architecture, construction physics, various climatic and cultural aspects, thus providing a great opportunity to introduce to the international participants of the summer school an important typology in Nordic culture: one that has been present in the lives of Estonians throughout history, from birth to death. The sauna ritual is intertwined with water – in this case, taking people directly onto the Soomaa streams which at least once a year floods the roads, meadows and yards of Soomaa, creating an unusual, a new world.
- Soomaa National Park, Estonia
- Sami Rintala, Hannes Praks, b210
- Estonian Academy of Arts