chapter  4
12 Pages

Reading the site at Sverre Fehn’s Hamar Museum

WithSuzanne Ewing

Sverre Fehn suggests that his work has come of age ‘in the shadow of modernism’.4 His built work, mainly in Scandinavia, recognised by the 1997 award of the Pritzker Prize, has been described as poetic, sculptural, humanistic and inclusive. Following media exposure early in his career, in the 1950s, with the publication of the Nordic Pavilion in Venice, wider acclaim came in the 1980s and 1990s. Peter Cook who, in 1981, included Fehn’s work in a series on ‘unappreciated architects’, noted that in ‘Sverre Fehn we have a believing architect, and we ignore his quiet and lyrical approach to modern architecture at our peril.’5 Fellow Norwegian Christian Norberg-Schulz commented in 1997 that ‘the belated recognition of Fehn is due to the fact that his works suddenly appear to “adapt” themselves to the international situation and to offer compelling answers to diffi cult and complex conditions’.6