Project: The Statoil reception centre, architect: Haga & Grov AS
The Stavanger-based architects Haga & Grovhave consistently produced architecture of high quality over the last two decades. While their work is deeply rooted in the Norwegian Knut Knudsen tradition, at the same time they renew and question the very same tradition through their buildings.This is one of the main points in Ottar Vedelden's essay, where he links the firm to Kenneth Frampton's concept of critical regionalism, but they have developed their own architectural strategies: "The firm of Haga & Grov works according to a persistent, critical, and contextually-oriented strategy. In order to discover an appropriate level of critical 'fitness,' 'directness,' or 'obviousness' in an overall design concept, they often start the planning process with a set of basic questions that challenge many of the assumptions conveyed by existing planning restrictions, commercial building technology, design goals or briefs, as well as popular taste. This work strategy has resulted in many interesting and quite unusual solutions, demonstrating that architecture, combined with hard work and struggle, can transcend conventional conditions and explore the potential of site specificity in a real and rich sense."