Wave Palace

In Vejle the artist Olafur Eliasson erected his first permanent building.

For some time now, the toy manufacturer Lego has been promoting not only the very young master builders, but also the somewhat more mature ones. Last year opened a visitor center and company museum in the Danish town of Billund that the architects of BIG have designed as a kind of massive Lego house. Now the artist Olafur Eliasson has built his first house on behalf of the Kirk Johansen family, owners of Lego. The Fjordenhus in Vejle, 30 kilometres from Billund, houses the offices of Kirk Kapital, the family owned asset management company.

Eliasson created an expressionist clinker building that represents a real Gesamtkunstwerk: the artist also designed the furniture, the lighting and various works of art that refer to the special building site – the Fjordenhus is located in the Vejlefjord and is only connected to the mainland by a footbridge. Water is therefore also the central theme of the house with its undulating façade and window sections in parabolic and elliptical shapes.  Eliasson created the building from the basic figure of four 28-metre-high cylinders, some of which overlap, the outline of which gains additional dynamics through irregular concave recesses. Inside, the floors are also organised around round or elliptical stairs and atriums. 

Eliasson is generous with the space: The double height ground floor contributes to this impression, as do the various air and water spaces that are cut into the cylinders and whose sole purpose is aesthetics. The interior, like the exterior, is dominated in its materiality by the glazed bricks used everywhere. The elaborate fixtures and furnishings continue the overall concept that Eliasson once again artistically condensed in the six works of art he created for the building. 

The Fjordenhus is just the beginning of Eliasson's architectural plans. Together with the architect Sebastian Behmann, he founded the studio Other Spaces (SOS) in 2014, which has already developed the façade of the multi-award-winning Harpa Concert Hall in Reykjavik. Further projects from Paris to Addis Ababa are planned. (fap)