Name of project: Notodden Bok og Blues Hus
Assignment: Open Competition
Type: Cultural Center
Client: Notodden Municipality
Size: 4000 m2
Location: Notodden, Norway
Year: 2010
Status: Competition completed
Team: Marc Jay, Julie Schmidt-Nielsen, Nora Fossum, Søren Thiesen, Lena Rasmussen, Juan Olivara, Zsofia Horvath, Luis Gil, Edward Gentry Becke


Notodden Book & Blues House is a café, a concert place, a culture school, a sounds studio, a movie theatre, a museum and a library, all gathered under one roof. Notodden is a town 1,5 hours southwest of Oslo, with 10,000 inhabitants. Every year, in august, the town becomes the scene for the largest blues festival in Europe, attracting over 30,000 people from all over the world.

The geometry of the house is generated by the wish of creating the Blue Scene. By wrapping the building in an L-shape around the old dock, we incorporate the industrial history of the site as a visual core in our project. The dock becomes an active part of the cultural experience of the house. In order to create concerts with visual experience, we suggest a site plan that creates the outlines for optimal concert events, large as small, interior as exterior. The program of the house is laid out so that the open functions are facing the water and the rooms requiring closed walls form an L-shaped frame on the northern side of the building.