Sámi design is based on nature and the life people have lived here. Everything from the design of clothing to the construction methods has been chiselled out and developed from generation to generation. Nature has provided the materials and is the origin of all the colours and shapes.

Naturum Visitor Centre Laponia is on Viedásnjárgga Headland, a place that sees severe weather and wind. The idea is that the extreme weather should be allowed to affect the building. The untreated wood is to become greyer in time, and in winter the snow will lie on the heavy wooden wall beams. From inside, you can see the snow forming layers against the building’s windows. Both the goahte doors and the entrance to the building are turned eastwards for protection against the westerly winds.

Inside, the grey walls are reminiscent of the dried pines in the old-growth forest outside. Just like in a goahte, people gather around the fireplace. In the toilets, we see patterns inspired by Sámi wallhangings and many decor details created by crafters from Laponia.

snöig sten_wingårdhs arkitektkontor

The inspiration for constructing a house to catch snow came from a stone on Viedásnjárgga Headland. Naturum was designed by Wingårdhs arkitekter, who saw how the wind left the snow in formations around the stones. Wingårdhs drafted the competition entry “Snöfällan” (The Snow Trap), a building where snow becomes part of the design, which changes from year to year depending on weather and wind.