This week you can read interviews with a select group of young offices, to which the editors of the magazine (Architektnytt + Arkitektur N) and a range of local associations in the NAL, NLA and NIL have recently given extra attention. Today: Speed Engineers in Oslo.
– In the latest issue of Arkitektur-N, I wrote a text about alien architecture. Is your work and your interests typical of the times we live in?
We work with things that we think are important, which are probably typical of the times we live in, but most architects haven’t fully realized yet. Perhaps the architecture industry is a little behind. It’s also part of the motivation we start for ourselves and work on our own. Then we can be a little lighter on our feet and do things we’re passionate about.
Do you want to challenge the role of an architect?
– Perhaps we are eager to challenge the established idea of what an architect does, yes. When we got out of school, we thought we’d do all the competitions and really work as traditional architects. But then we saw that maybe it wasn’t the most exciting thing we could do, and although we think it’s very exciting to build a house, there are also a lot of other things that we want and can do. We have gradually entered the field of eccentric architecture, which has been explored relatively little, at least in Norway. We are now working to explore the field further, through theory, exhibitions, and publications. It gave us a lot of new motivation.
So the eccentric wasn’t around from the start, when I started in 2018?
The idea of challenging the current rule was there from the start. We were aware of the quirky approaches from other disciplines, but little did we know that there was also an established professional field within architecture. We’ve already been working on these issues, and that’s probably why this topic resonates with us like this: How can we turn everything that has been embraced upside down and do things differently?
– Is that what weird architecture is all about, turning it upside down and getting a different look?
Nobody understands what we’re talking about when we say anomalous geometry, so we’re used to talking about it. There are many concepts to this term, but the anomaly is about what ends up outside or next to the norm. For us, it’s about constantly challenging different standards in architecture, as there are so many standards, both written and unwritten. Then you also understand that these standards can be harmful to the most vulnerable. Architecture is a nurturing profession and therefore it is specifically about seeing the most vulnerable and taking them seriously. It has to be said that in our built projects we haven’t worked directly with these kinds of issues, but the goal is to put this into planning to a much greater extent. Challenge is also the starting point for the name, Speed. Architects are supposed to work slowly, with precision, and with precision, and we do, too, but we love the explosion of the name, which challenges the common notion of what an architect should be.
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