“We’re overwhelmed, of course. It feels unreal and unexpected. We wanted our design to push the boundaries a little, we wanted to break with convention and incorporate the workspace into the living space. And it gave us an opportunity to fully explore wood as a material. Ecological sustainability is important to us and wood was just the obvious choice in most places,” say the architects Anders Johansson and Anja Thedenius.
Ateljé i Södersvik is a large studio that the architects designed by themselves, for themselves. Anders Johansson and Anja Thedenius have created a building that is both a home and a workspace in one. Building contractor was Ruben Albersson. Large windows welcome in nature and light, and it is easy to find both peace and inspiration.
“I like to describe the space as a theatre that can be reconfigured to form different kinds of settings. It was also important to get the right relationship between inside and out. Opening up the oversized doors invites nature into the building,” says architect Anja Thedenius.
Located on Rådmansö in Roslagen, outside Norrtälje, Ateljé was completed in 2018 and offers a studio, a loft, a space beneath the loft and a bathroom. The jury describes the studio as a carefully considered and well-proportioned way of experimenting with space and with wood. The material has been used everywhere, on every scale, from the structural frame to furniture.
“Our discussions on the jury have centred around the leading role of wood in the spaces and the spatial experiences offered by the buildings. Ateljé i Södersvik provides a genuine encounter with the material, with its simplicity providing a beautiful and multifaceted environment in which to live and work. It’s inspiring, to say the least,” says Carmen Izquierdo, chair of the jury for the Swedish Wood Award 2020.
The winner was announced at the Wood Award Gala, which was streamed live from Berns in Stockholm on 2 December. Over 1000 people took part, giving a great reaction when the prize of SEK 100,000 and the title of Winner of the Swedish Wood Award 2020 were presented.
“We celebrated innovative and attractive wooden architecture yesterday. But we also honoured a sustainable society built on innovation, responsibility and faith in the future. It is vital that we recognise how our lifestyle affects our tomorrow, and how we therefore need to make sustainable choices day in and day out,” comments Alexander Nyberg, who is responsible for the Swedish Wood Award at the industry organisation Swedish Wood.
Read more about Ateljé i Södersvik and the jury’s statement here.
About the Swedish Wood Award
The Swedish Wood Award – one of Sweden’s most prestigious prizes for architecture – is presented every four years to a new work in Sweden that demonstrates outstanding architectural qualities. It is awarded to a new building, bridge or other structure in Sweden that exemplifies particular architectural qualities and makes full and proper use of wood’s potential, while also reflecting or advancing Sweden’s architectural tradition. The award is administered by Swedish Wood, which is part of the Swedish Forest Industries Federation.
The 2020 jury comprised Tomas Alsmarker, Petra Gipp, Carmen Izquierdo (chairperson), Stefan Nyberg and Natasha Racki. A total of 130 competition entries were submitted for the Swedish Wood Award 2020. The jury visited 40 of these and drew up a shortlist of 12 nominees. The winner was announced at the Wood Award Gala, which was streamed live from Berns in Stockholm on 2 December 2020.