A Place for Relaxation

Whenever I feel like I need to take a break—just reflect and sort out my thoughts, if I feel anxious or unhappy. I seek my way to the water. It is a place where I feel I can be by myself, even though I'm not alone. I can hear the city behind but look into a distant view, having reality close by but all this room for my own thoughts in front of me. Being in Bergen was a bit of a struggle for me and I needed the escape to water more than ever. That's how my project got born.

The tide In Bergen can differ by one meter in just a few days. The places along the waterfront can change radically by water eating up the space or exposing the bottom of the sea. In Skuteviken, where one concrete edge hitting a wall made of piled stone blocks, the slow movement of the tide and the fast movement of the waves create many sounds of the water hitting different surfaces and finding its way to the gaps and cracks. Defining these and listening more closely to them with a simple device gives a clearer understanding of the sounds and puts the focus on melodies you can not anticipate. All of a sudden you forget your worries as the intensified sounds bring a smile to your face.

Stockholm is a city made of islands surrounded by waters. It is constantly in the background but rarely so close that you can hear it, smell it or feel it on your skin. There are however several piers where to go, one of them being perfect for when you just want to step aside for a while, clear your head and have a moment for yourself. It has become an important place for me where to relax, where I can be alone but at the same time part of the city, where I can cry without people seeing but having them near if I need them.

Visiting this pier again made me remember a pier in Bergen where I would go for the same occasion. I had a strong feeling and reliability to them both and wanted to investigate it more. I compared them and started looking for similarities they have to each other and what it is that makes these places so comfortable and comforting. I found qualities that these piers have that are important for me, personally, to feel safe and at ease. Based on these researches I wanted to make a proposal for a place for relaxation, to give the people in the cities an opportunity to step aside and take a break.

Creating a new place where to feel relaxed within the city based on my own feelings and preferences, adding thresholds that would bring you closer to your senses, make a bigger contrast to different environments and bring you closer to nature. Having you walk from a concrete jungle into a box that would lower the busy noises and through the sound cambers intensify the sound of the water from underneath, making you step out into a space where you are surrounded by water, walking you to the end of the pier where to have a moment of relaxation. And under the warm wooden deck, gabions filled with different sizes of rocks would hold you up, making the water playfully find it's way through the cracks and gaps, sipper through and sing for you. Depending on the movement of the water it could press up against the deck from underneath making gurgle sounds, or splash up making you wet. This private place in the heart of the city, could with its elements that provoke new feelings become a relaxing spot for someone to every now and again just take a little break.