East of the Sun and West of the Moon, Architectural and infrastructural interventions in Oslos forest, Marka
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East of the Sun and West of Moon investigates the forests surrounding Oslo, commonly known as Oslomarka, or short, Marka, as the quintessential public space in the greater Oslo region. The project consists of 5 projects along a path through Nordmarka, proposing a new form of public architecture appropriate for this special forest. Marka is Oslos quintessential public space and object of cultural construct, it serves as the immidiate and closest neighboor for the consumption of friluftsliv for roughly 1,5 million people. The public life of the city continues into the forest, with all its activities, economic interests and different users and stakeholders. Marka is a made landscape. though often portrayed and thought about as natural and pure, through a romanticized idea about nature. When seen through the trees, layers of infrastructure, buildings and man-made objects infiltrate Marka completely. Though no coherent image of an architecture is visible in what appears to be a make-shift jungle of provisional decisions. When considering Marka a made landscape, what other public programmatic and spatial potentials does the forest contain? The project embraces the artificiality of the forest. Re-imagining the forest by dealing with principal aspects of Marka, while searching for an inherent spatial identity and new form of public architecture between the spruce and pine trees. The project opposes the public spaces of the recent Fjordcity development, both as the other border containing Oslos urbanization and as spaces with room for a collective imagination. Marka as project is investigated as a linear journey through Nordmarka. Structured along some of the 2000 km of footpaths and 2500 km of skiingtrails. The chosen path is one of many, it is not special. Along this path the project proposes 5 interventions, dealing with one or more principal aspects of Marka. The individual projects are architectural interventions, in their own right, and stand as attempts to serve further insight on the Oslomarka forest as subject-matter. Together they illustrate a scenario that transgress the traditional boundaries and seeks to imagine a new form of public architecture appropriate for this special forest.