In a world where information is available online almost indefinitely, the role of libraries must be rethought. Of this, the new Oslo Public Library is an outstanding example. In contrast to the traditional notion of libraries as archives, this imposing building by Lundhagem and Atelier Oslo represents a radical interpretation of the library as a vibrant place to meet and to linger – a new type of public space.
Deichman Bjørvika documents the design and building process in great detail – from the architects’ first drafts to the opening of the completed building. Essays by novelist Elif Shafak and the library’s long-time director Liv Sæteren explain the significance of libraries as an integrative social force. Niklas Maak pays tribute to the Oslo Public Library from the perspective of architectural criticism. Photo essays by Iwan Baan, Einar Aslaksen and Hélène Binet capture the architecture and atmosphere of the Norwegian capital's new place for people to gather and meet.
Edited by Lundhagem and Atelier Oslo Architects
With photographs by Einar Aslaksen, Iwan Baan, Hélène Binet
With essays by Niklas Maak, Elif Shafak, Liv Sæteren
Design: Integral Lars Müller