Middelfart Savings Bank

Middelfart Savings Bank

Architect
3XN
Location
Havnegade 21, Middelfart, Denmark
Project Year
2010
Category
Banks

Shops

Bars
Stories By
3XN

Studio Olafur Eliasson
Adam Mørk
Product Spec Sheet

ElementBrand
ManufacturersRockfon
ManufacturersElcon A/S
ManufacturersGuldfeldt Nielsen A/S
ManufacturersHS Hansen
ManufacturersJorton

Product Spec Sheet
Manufacturers
by Rockfon
Manufacturers
Manufacturers
Manufacturers
Manufacturers
by Jorton

Middelfart Savings Bank

3XN as Architects

Middelfart Savings Bank is a key institution in the town of Middelfart, located by the Lillebælt waters on the island of Funen, Denmark. Thus the Savings Bank wanted their new Head Office to provide a new public space for the local citizens as well as an architectural icon for the town and the Savings Bank.


The building is characterized by a dramatic roofscape accommodating multiple functions. 83 prism-like skylights compose the spectacular roof surface defining the geometry of the building – in reference to the maritime environment as well as the surrounding timber framed buildings. Thus, the new Head Office gently reflects and interacts with the dimensions, scales, roofs and cornice lines of the old town.


The roof is specially designed to frame a perfect view towards the water while at the same time shading from direct sunlight; thereby demonstrating a perfect synergy between design and function.


A bookshop, a café, a real estate agent and the cash desk are placed around a central plaza, resulting in the building forming an informal public meeting space at the ground floor level. The Savings Bank work stations are located on three open terraces internally connected by broad staircases encouraging interaction and informal meetings or breaks. All plateaus are endowed with plenty of daylight and an unhindered view to the water.


The working environment is further improved by sustainable features such as natural ventilation and the latest technologies in energy efficient heating and cooling. Thermo active concrete elements facilitate energy savings of 30-50 percent.

Middelfart Savings Bank

Studio Olafur Eliasson as Designers

The Danish-Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson (b.1967) often refers to his installations as experimental designs, rather than works of art in the traditional sense. 'Visual machines' such as kaleidoscopes, camera obscure and installations containing prisms or mirrors, has long been a central concern. These 'machines' he uses to encourage viewers to consider what it means to see and to sense, to learn and act in a world in constant motion. By doing so, the artist in his own words "to focus on our co-creation of and responsibility for the spaces we live and work. Trick is part of the real world - it can not be separated from what we call 'reality'." Eliasson's fundamental concern for issues that binds art and architecture together, has spawned a variety of tasks at home and abroad, where he often subtly works with the spatial dimensions of a building or a public space. An important aspect of the project in Middelfart Savings Bank. Eliasson said: "The kaleidoscope materialize forms and dimensions, otherwise we can not see. It lies on the border between the sensory and non-sensory, between our world and everyday life. It was obvious to use this construction in Middelfart Savings Bank, as both the floor, the ceiling and the shape of 3XN's building as such refers to the kaleidoscopic forms. "


Space for shooting stars includes six kaleidoscopes, immersed in the new wider population floor, each covered by a transparent glass disk, which makes it possible to stand on top of them and looking down. Each kaleidoscope consists of three mirror surfaces meeting at an apex. The tips are cut at different angles, and with light pouring through these slices are six different geometric structures visible in the mirrors reflection. These calls Eliasson: Dodecahedron Icosahedron, Kepler Icosa star, Kepler dodeca star, Icosadodecahedron and Square sphere.

Project Credits
3XN
Architects
Manufacturers
Landscape Architects
Engineers
Consultants
Melbourne School of Design, The University of Melbourne
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Melbourne School of Design, The University of Melbourne

Universities
Melbourne, Australia - Build completed in 2014
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