glimmering in solitude among the snow-laden landscape, stands a distinctive public sauna erected by artistic duo mats bigert and lars bergström. titled the solar egg, the installation stands at five meters high and four meters wide; the smooth and multi-faceted envelope or ‘shell’ wrapped in gold-plated stainless steel. a total of 69 separate pieces make up the egg’s exterior, reflecting glimpses of the swedish town of luossabacken in kiruna in the distance.


all images © jean-baptiste béranger

 

 

the project was commissioned by swedish developer riksbyggen to commemorate the growth of kiruna’s urban landscape which involves the relocation of entire city districts in response to ground subsidence caused by decades of iron ore mining. bigert & bergström’s response saw an oval-shaped sauna being created as a symbol of rebirth and as an homage to kiruna’s iron ore fields. a delicately-framed staircase reveals the entrance, an opening that appears to have cracked open to invite guests inside. the multi-faceted character is continued inside but instead, finished in pine wood. at the center, heat is emitted by a heart-shaped wood-fired burner.


the unusual yet familiar shape appears to have landed into the arctic landscape

 

 

located in sweden’s northernmost town, the solar egg is a warm welcome and anintimate space of reflection for locals and visitors to take part in the unique sauna experience. created with the intention to be transportable, the faceted-structure can be de-constructed piece-by-piece and relocated to different locations within the city.


artists bigert & bergström created the sculptural chamber in the form of an egg-shaped sauna

 

 

‘saunas are places that fascinate. when riksbyggen asked us to interpret kiruna, we felt it was natural to explore a space that unites and encourages conversation,’ comments artists mats bigert and lars bergström. ‘saunas are sacrosanct places where you can discuss all manner of things – from the big to the small.’


the entrance is a crack and interrupts the shell to reveal the timber sauna interior

 

 

the project continues bigert & bergström’s exploration with humanity’s relationship to climate, nature, energy and technology. on this occasion, the solar egg stands as a sculptural symbol that prompts thoughts of rebirth and an incubator that nurtures conversation and exchanges of ideas.


a wood-heated, heart-shaped sauna stove made out of iron and stone stands at the core


the egg’s interior is wood, with the wall panels and floor decking made out of pine and the bench of aspen


the envelope is composed of stainless steel mirrors with titanium gold color coating,


the egg shape symbolizes rebirth and new opportunities marking the start of kiruna’s urban transformation


 consisting of 69 separate pieces, the installation can be taken down and moved to different locations

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

    have something to add? share your thoughts in our comments section below.

    comments policy
    LOG IN
    designboom's comment policy guidelines
    generally speaking, if we publish something, it's because we're genuinely interested in the subject. we hope you'll share this interest and if you know even more about it, please share! our goal in the discussion threads is to have good conversation and we prefer constructive opinions. we and our readers have fun with entertaining ones. designboom welcomes alerts about typos, incorrect names, and the like.
    the correction is at the discretion of the post editor and may not happen immediately.

    what if you disagree with what we or another commenter has to say?
    let's hear it! but please understand that offensive, inappropriate, or just plain annoying comments may be deleted or shortened.

    - please do not make racist, sexist, anti-semitic, homophobic or otherwise offensive comments.
    - please don't personally insult the writers or your fellow commenters.
    - please avoid using offensive words, replacing a few letters with asterisks is not a valid workaround.
    - please don't include your website or e-mail address in your comments for the purpose of self-promotion.
    - please respect jury verdicts and do not discuss offensively on the competition results
    (there is only one fist prize, and designboom usually asks renown professionals to help us to promote talent.
    in addition to the awarded designs, we do feel that almost all deserve our attention, that is why we publish
    the best 100-200 entries too.)

    a link is allowed in comments as long as they add value in the form of information, images, humor, etc. (links to the front page of your personal blog or website are not okay). unwelcome links (to commercial products or services of others, offensive material etc. ) will be redacted. and, ... yes, spam gets banned. no, we do not post fake comments.

    design news