Sanden Hodnekvam

Tietäjä - Norsk Skogfinsk Museum

Competition proposal
Location: Svullrye, Hedmark Norway
Year: 2017

Tietäjä (Finnish for shaman) seeks to capture the dark and mystical culture of the Forest Finns, a people defined by their connection to nature and beliefs rooted in Finnish shamanistic tradition. The project seeks to communicate the mystical and rich atmosphere of the mighty landscape and the vivid stories of the people who resided here.

The museum invites the visitors to a journey through the wilderness. Its free floor plan derives from the shape of the site, sneaking in-between the existing trees and stretches towards the river Rotna. The long, slender volume enters into dialogue with the characteristic landscape. The exhibition is organized as a walk through the gallery spaces, leading the visitors out in the forest into an open-air museum route.

The museums geometric facades give the museum a distinctive identity, closely related to the endless forest landscape and the rich culture of the Forest Finns. The triangular openings derive from the shamanistic symbolism of the ancient Finnish culture. In their tradition, angular figures were carved on the walls of important buildings for protection against evil spirits. The heart of the museum is the warm fireplace – a sanctuary from the cold winter nights of Norway.

Tietäjä seeks an architecture that balances between the intriguing, dark and mystical heritage of the Forest Finns with the warm refuge around the fire. The museum tells the story of the forgotten minority of Finnskogen. A story about life with and against nature.

Other projects