saunders architecture: fogo island studios
saunders architecture: fogo island studios
jan 10, 2011

saunders architecture: fogo island studios

‘fogo island studios’ by saunders architecture, fogo island, newfoundland, canada all images courtesy saunders architecture images © bent rene synnevag

the shorefast foundation along with the fogo island arts corporation commissioned norway-based studio, saunders architecture to design a series of six artists’ studios in various locations on fogo island in newfoundland, canada. the foundation works with the people of fogo island to find ways to preserve the landscape and its civilization through the arts and culture.

saunders architecture: fogo island studios ‘long studio’

situated on the north atlantic, the island is home to a community who have lived for centuries between strong winds and waves in pursuit of fish. the islanders live in the untamed landscape in a subtle and unpretentious way and have seen their traditional way of life threatened by forces largely beyond their control.

designed in a way that would respect and dignify the fragile landscape while maintaining a connection between the past and the future of the island, the angular studios rise above the rocks and the waves to provide panoramic views of the unique landscape.

saunders architecture: fogo island studios

measuring 120 m2, the design of the ‘long studio’ reflects the transition of the seasons. the entrance of the structure consists of an open but covered space which represents the spring and the beginning of the seasonal activity. the single stretch of whitewashed patio space leads to an exposed central area which encourages outdoor habitation during the summer days. the final and main body of the studio is a fully enclosed space that looks out towards the sea. large windows at either end and a skylight provides natural light to flood the interior. a one meter thick wall located on the south side houses storage, toilets and washbasins, with doors that are flush to the wall, minimizing any visual distraction within the space.

saunders architecture: fogo island studios

each studio is supported by pillars on the end that faces the sea, while the entrance areas all have a small concrete foundation anchoring the structure to the rocky terrain. with this type of construction, the studios can be placed in almost any place on the island. in addition, this allows for the studios to be prefabricated in a local workshop during the winter months, then placed in the landscape during the spring.

saunders architecture: fogo island studios entryway

saunders architecture: fogo island studios exposed outdoor space

saunders architecture: fogo island studios (left) entrance (right) skylight and west-facing window

saunders architecture: fogo island studios south wall unit in its open state

saunders architecture: fogo island studios kitchen and storage

saunders architecture: fogo island studios

saunders architecture: fogo island studios

saunders architecture: fogo island studios ‘long studio’ in context

the three-storey ‘tower studio’ stands as a vertical icon in an expansively horizontal landscape. purposely designed to contrast with the elements of the site, the 80m2 studio features twisting planes which result in a dynamic and sculptural form. the upper levels provide a double height room for the artists while the lower floor offers storage and extra studio space. directed northwards to the sea, a large window wraps around the western facade to ensure diffused daylight into the studio. a roof terrace allows for a panoramic view of the surrounding landscapes.

saunders architecture: fogo island studios rendering of ‘tower studio’

saunders architecture: fogo island studios model of ‘tower studio’

a number of other designs are still being constructed on the island. six studios will eventually provide residencies to artists.

saunders architecture: fogo island studios rendering of ’tilting studio’

saunders architecture: fogo island studios rendering of ‘little seldom studio’

saunders architecture: fogo island studios rendering of ’tilting studio’

saunders architecture: fogo island studios floor plan of the ‘long studio’ (1) studio (2) eating / work area (3) WC / shower (4) exterior area (5) storage / mechanical

saunders architecture: fogo island studios longitudinal section

saunders architecture: fogo island studios north elevation

saunders architecture: fogo island studios south elevation

  • I don’t see any respect to “traditions, environment, nature etc”. It’s visual polution of coastline. One object visually kills approx 7 miles of the beach and makes feel visitors walking possession of very agresive person.

    ice says:
  • you design a contemporary kitchen space and you install what appear to be cheap ceiling light fixtures from the local hardware store?

    bill says:
  • ice: genau!
    Nein danke!

    ppr says:
  • I think it is beautiful and elegant!!! The idea of immitating the “traditions and nature” is a good concept but a bit primitive. Things CAN be different and I think this makes me feel more of an “outside” intervension – being quite contrasting with the natural landscape – as aprism or gem coming from other galaxies….BRAVO!

    LGF says:
  • I hate people destructing “public space” because “they can” afford a ignorant architects building. thats it a building- it´s not architecture…

    Marek says:
  • Marek- don’t forget that the building where you live used to be ‘public space’ at some point in time.

    Ice- does coastline exist solely for your visual enjoyment? Have you been to Fogo Island? Would you even be aware of this piece of coastline had it not been for this project?

    Just playing Devil’s advocate here..

    r. says:
  • Whats with the gawd-awful ceiling fixtures over the Kitchen counter? I wouldn’t let my place be photographed with that garbage on the ceiling.

    rcvs1 says:
  • Can you hear my sighs?… Never mind, I’m absolutely astonished by the lightness of the structures and the perfection of the surroundings. Marvellous!

    Vania/Brazil says:
  • @r.: of course my home is to be a part of public space, and i hate it. its typologically and a architectural the same position as this building. ignorant. believe me, i know what i´m talkin´about.
    every “nice” comment to this position is stabbin´ the humans freedom… i like it dramatic…

    Marek says:

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