Iceland is a country of turbulent beauty set among lava, ice, lakes and forests where the relationship between Man and Nature is a pressing daily challenge with an almost epic flavour.
Studio KRADS, with offices in Iceland and Denmark, has built a multi-level holiday home on a wooded hillside sloping northwards towards the lake Þingvallavatn in the southwest of the country.
The building plastically follows the contours of the landscape and almost seems to blend into it thanks to the green surfaces of the roof, covered with grass and moss and sloping towards the hill.
The site was chosen with meticulous care to integrate the building as closely as possible into its surroundings and at the same time to frame privileged views of the landscape: the main room of the house offers a spectacular, unconditional view to the north, above the vegetation, towards Lake Þingvallavatn and Skjaldbreið mountain; in the opposite direction, a southwest-facing terrace surrounded by trees projects a view towards the Jórutindur and Hátindur mountains.
The forest around the house is almost impenetrable and only the terrace and the green roof surfaces remain unobstructed: access to the roof is from inside, from the loft, or from outside, where a gentle slope connects the house with the neighbouring boathouse. From the roof, a natural stage framed by vegetation and mountains hosts the ideal continuation of domestic activities, for which contemplation of the changing surrounding landscape is an integral part of daily life.
In the "Dialogue between Nature and an Icelander", Giacomo Leopardi depicts a dominant nature, indifferent to the destiny of man, who is simply devoured. In fact, the opposite is true. In this case, an unusual balance seems to have been found where the latter renounces any attempt to dominate and instead chooses the path of a humble and respectful confrontation with the former.
- Holiday home at Þingvallavatn, Iceland
- Tina Dickow, Helgi Hrafn Jónsson
- Architectural project:
- KRADS (Kristján Eggertsson and Kristján Örn Kjartansson)
- Emil Þór Guðmundsson
- Interior carpentry and exterior detailing:
- Helgi Hrafn Jónsson, Jón Árni Þórisson, Christian Danielsen