The Lantern Pavilion was come to fruition by the collaboration of a French and a Norwegian practice, AWP and Atelier Oslo.
When Sandnes and Stavanger were chosen as cultural capitals of Europe 2008, the Norwegian Wood competitions were launched to promote innovative, timber architecture contributing to make the region an international showcase for it.
Sandnes asked for the design a new square and a sculptural object in wood in pedestrian district Langgata aiming at revitalizing the area, and creating a place where many different activities could take place: a meeting point, markets, informal music concerts and other happenings.
A place able to shelter, invite and encourage more social events and to sustain new practices.
Since the site is visible from afar, and from the railway separating these two distinct areas of the city it was essential to create an object that could be experienced from distance and reveal the square.
Homely but looking at the future, the architects ambition was to create a manifesto for public space design: not just a decoration, but an urban strategy.
The proposal used the iconographic shape of and old, uplifted wooden house. By the redefinition of its traditional construction and by making it glow in the dark, a new landmark for the city was created, a symbol of the old city upscaled to the new city's dimensions, dealing with the Norwegian wood ancient architecture motives to design a contemporary object.
This public Lantern aimed at providing a space where to enjoy light and weather changes if/when nothing else takes place. And if there is always something happening, on account of the Lantern, more will happen: creativity calls for creativity.