Featured Posts

D2Line - behind the scenes
D2Line: Inside the Brand and What Drives us Forward
View Post
To top
27 Aug

BIG as Bjarke Ingels


“You can say, like, planet Earth has an existing geology, and what we do as human beings and as architects is that we try to sort of alter and modify and expand the geology”. These words belong to the famous contemporary architect Bjarke Ingels. According to his personal manifesto “architects are not just designers of beautiful facades or beautiful sculptures, but systems of economy and ecology, where we channel the flow not only of people, but also the flow of resources through our cities and buildings”.

“YES is more”

According to his architectural manifesto “Yes is More”, it’s comic book, there is  the importance of “thinking big”, dealing with problems as challenges and finding sources for giant inspiration.

Who is Bjarke Ingels? Nice guy who experiments with spaces and times, well-known architect from Copenhagen and founder of the architectural studio BIG,addicted to the Minecraft, LEGO and comics. He doesn’t concern himself as a trendy. Just on the opposite Bjarke studies the works of the dead ancestors rather than of the his contemporaries.

Bjarke Ingels Architekt

Bjarke Ingels Group Founder and Creative Partner Bjarke Ingels speaks during a Toyota press event for CES 2020 at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center on January 6, 2020 in Las Vegas, Nevada. CES, the world’s largest annual consumer technology trade show, runs January 7-10 and features about 4,500 exhibitors showing off their latest products and services to more than 170,000 attendees /Getty Images/

“In the big picture, architecture is the art and science of making sure that our cities and buildings fit with the way we want to live our lives.”

Some people say that he is megalomanic. “ I made a mistake when I named my office BIG ( short for Bjarke Ingels Group)”. In fact he prefers the idea of architectural evolution in a Darwin’s sense – “the forms and shapes of the biosphere have evolved through millennia-long selection processes – various lifeforms  have encountered the forces of the nature  and have been edited to become what they are today’.

One of his latest project is the building “Smile”. It’s made of black blasted stainless steel extends along 126th Street in East Harlem, Manhattan. Ingels was inspired by the surface of the moon. Generally he is well known with his twisting shape to an art gallery outside Oslo or a tower in Vancouver. It is really curious to see CopenHill, monument for the Instagram age. It’s a public structure – power plant that is also a ski slope.

But what about his unique “courtscraper” in Manhattan?  W57 is a big off-kilter pyramid framed by a garden courtyard. It is a hybrid between the European block and a traditional Manhattan high-rise. “I think some of the most exciting transformations that have happened in New York over the last two decades is the return of nature.

New York Building Pyramid

New York City and Hudson River features VIA 57 Building Pyramid shaped building by Bjarke Ingels, and Manhattan Skyline./Getty Images/


Cristal City

Now as the air has gotten cleaner, we’re suddenly re-discovering, “Hey, there’s the outdoors, we can have roof gardens and terraces!” It is funny but when Bjarke arrived in New York ten years ago, he introduced the idea of a courtyard in a skyscraper. One of the architects was very sceptical and said:  “Why would we want outdoor space? It doesn’t count. 

The tenants are not going to pay for it, so why should we care about it?” Nowadays is opposite. Urban integrated agriculture is going to transform the look and feel of the modern cities. “So imagine normally when you arrive at a city, you drive from the airport through this kind of industrial wasteland. I imagine that will slowly become more like a crystal city – it may still contain this industrial landscape but it might be wrapped in a kind of crystal skin of combined photovoltaics and greenhouses.”

His dream is architecture to be responsible and to help economy and ecology to combine successfully.
Lego House

Lego House, Billund, Denmark.

One of his favorite project is “LEGO House” in Billund, Denmark.” Like any Dane, I grew up with LEGO. What’s unique about Lego as a toy is that it’s actually not a toy, it’s a vehicle for systematic creativity that enables the child to create its own world and then to inhabit that world through play”.

This building is a visitor attraction with massive LEGO bricks with four color coded play zones with restaurants, LEGO museum, conference center and Masterpiece Gallery with personal LEGO creations.

As William Gibson, one of Bjarke’s favorite writer, says “The future is already here, it’s just not very evenly distributed.” . We hope that is true and the best is yet to come.