Manufactured Territory

Alexandra Holman
Architecture and Extreme Environments

Iceland is a land of raw geological processes and holds a stark contrast between the operations of man and nature.  The proposal utilises the setting of an industrial spillzone to speculatively propose a 'laboratory landscape for geothermally grown architecture'. 

The project is located within the effluent pools that separate the Svartsengi Geothermal Powerplant from the famous Blue Lagoon Spa. Engaging with the conflicting identities that exist onsite, which oscillate between 'environmental disaster' and 'Natural Wonder of the World' (National Geographic), the project negotiates between the discordant relationship of industry and landscape, production and recreation. 

The thesis is a speculative proposition for a novel means for producing a hyperlocal building material in Iceland, based on creative use of industrial waste and through a method of slow geological cultivation.

 A critical comment on the traditional methods found within the construction industry today, the thesis proposes a 'growing' architecture that is similar to the ecology of a forest plantation.  Dissolving programs of the strictly recreational and fervently utilitarian, the project aims to blur themes of industry and tourism as a means to stake out a new narrative within this manufactured territory.

Conflicting Identities of Site : Industry & Tourism

Thesis Program


Alexandra Holman modtog VOLA-legatet for sit afgangsprojekt. Juryen sagde bl.a.: 

"The project is located within the unique context of Iceland, a land of raw geological processes and a stark contrast between the operations of man and nature. This project is consistently innovative - from the rigorous research to the daring hypothesis."