I have always been a big fan of organic architecture, where the lines of the Dragspelhuset building seem to flow perfectly into the environment itself. As Frank Lloyd Wright said, “The good building is not one that hurts the landscape, but one which makes the landscape more beautiful than it was before the building was built.”
The key to doing that is to make the building a mirror to the landscape, something that looks like it belongs there and always has. And that is exactly what Rotterdam architects 24H have achieved with this gorgeous structure in Sweden! Let’s take a look!
The house is situated right next to a beautiful little creek near Lake Övre Gla, which is located in the Glaskogen Nature Reserve. As it turns out, my mention of Frank Lloyd Wright is actually spot on, because the home’s commissioner, Borris Zeisser said, “I’m an enormous Frank Lloyd Wright fan. I’ve been to Fallingwater five or six times, and that’s what I wanted—to have my house over the stream.”
Here is another shot of the gorgeous exterior. The organic lines remind me a lot of either a tree or a mushroom (or some kind of cool trippy hybrid of both). Notice how form and function are in harmony here. The roof is steeply angled, perfect for the snowy winters in Sweden.
Now, if you want to know what’s really trippy about this house, it’s the fact that it includes a movable extension which can be deployed on wheels along a steel rail system through use of manual pulleys. Why? The building codes for this plot of land were incredibly strict. The deployable wing offered a great way to get around them. Plus, during the cold winters, the wing can be pulled back in to provide extra insulation for the home.
Let’s head inside. Wondering what’s going on with the walls? Those are actually reindeer hides. The reason they are there has to do with the indigenous Sámi people. The Sámi traditionally cover the walls of their rooms with reindeer hides. The hides provide excellent insulation against cold Swedish winters. Fitting the building into the local culture was as important to the architects as fitting it into the natural surroundings.
Here is the kitchen. It’s surprisingly spacious, isn’t it? For such a small space (the entire building measures only 200 square feet), it really conveys a sense of openness. Part of this is probably the result of the smoothly sloping walls and the lack of hard angles or corners.
As a completely off-the-grid structure, this building uses propane for cooking. The lighting is solar-powered. There may not be a lot of sunlight during the wintertime, but the summer days are very long and bright. The cabin doesn’t have an indoor bathroom (you have to walk over to an outhouse, brrrr!), but there is one luxury, a steam-fed hot tub. A woodstove provides the heat.
Here is another shot of the same space from a different angle, looking down the length of the home. You can see the room with the hides on the walls, so now you have an idea how it all fits together. This shot also puts emphasis on the super cool overhead lights. Made out of glass, they also bring to mind the bracket fungi that grow on tree trunks (I’ve even seen it in that color before).
The Dragspelhuset tiny house is a truly remarkable work of architecture. It looks so natural in its surroundings that you would think that nature herself had crafted it. It doesn’t subtract from the setting, but adds to it. What a wonderful, imaginative structure!
Architect link: http://24h.eu/