Dorte Mandrup’s lecture focused on her landmark projects that were, or are currently being created at UNESCO World Heritage sites. The Icefjord Centre is located 250 kilometres north of the Arctic Circle and the Wadden Sea Centre, a thatched exhibition centre, on Denmark’s rough West coast. The architect gave an emphatic account of her approach to construction projects in such sensitive environments. The starting point of the process is to understand and investigate the prevailing conditions. What it takes is a comprehensive interpretation of all accessible facts and feelings, far beyond the mere level of observation.
Dorte Mandrup pointed out, “Embedding a building into a landscape gives us the opportunity to emphasize the uniqueness of the place. The relationship between the physicality of a building and the vastness of a landscape brings the potential to work at countless different scales. We can bring out the drama and splendour of a great natural landscape through the arrangement, shape and types of materials we use in a building”
As founder and creative director of her Copenhagen-based firm, architect Dorte Mandrup inspires a highly committed international team of 70 every day. In addition, she is vice president of the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, member of the Historic Buildings Council, adjunct professor at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts and regularly takes on guest professorships. Her work won numerous awards, including the Green Good Design Award of the Chicago Athenaeum, the Bauwelt Award, the C.F. Hansen-Medaille, the Finn Juhl Design Prize and recently the lifelong Honorary Grant of the Danish Arts Foundation. Her powerful light and sound installation – an artistic interpretation of her cultural project in Greenland, the Icefjord Information Centre – took centre stage at the Venice Biennale of Architecture.
Every site has a uniqueness – and that’s what we are trying to expose.