Why (Do we) Bother?
Most people spend some good portion of their time finding ways to improve their lives. There are small moments, adjusting laces on shoes or adding sugar to tea. There are also more grandiose dreams of well-being, of travel, family life, or maybe celebrity. Sometimes we find things we enjoy and we turn these moments into habits or fetishes, setting aside other more useful things in service of new routines. The rational models fall apart.
Underneath it all there is an inherent hunger that goes well beyond the need for food. Craving food seems to make sense, without it we die… although eventually we die anyway. Like cravings for food there are cravings for comfort. It seems helpful. Our bodies aren’t naturally protected like other creatures. In the end we are always on the make to build comfort. We generally demand clothing. Whether we have a home or not we build shelters. Even if we are alone we seek identity.
In many ways life is synonymous with place. There is constancy in life to create place and identity. Snøhetta is concerned with these things. These are the conditions that define the performance of our lives. This is what our studio looks to expose and create. We seek what Francis Bacon once described as “taking reality by surprise.” Some of us at Snøhetta call this re-invention.
Most of our needs seem familiar. But we also sense that familiarity can be superficial. Beyond the conventional is an ocean of the unexpected. There is fear of the surprising though, it can feel uncontrollable. Control acquires greater importance when existence is fragile. At Snøhetta our work is often considered odd or unfamiliar when first experienced... [+]