Harpa, the Great Concert Hall of Reykjavik

“Architecture is music in space, as it were a frozen music”
Friedrich Wilhelm Joseph von Schelling

In 2011, the modern day cathedral, or rather the new concert hall of Reykjavik, was finished. The planning and building process, which took about a decade, was nearly stopped in 2007 due to the financial crisis. Thankfully the state of Iceland stepped up and made sure the project was completed by replacing the bankrupt private investors.

The building design is inspired by the unique volcanic nature of Iceland, with the crystallized structures that are everywhere.

The outer skin is made up of multi-faceted glass structures like a huge three dimensional puzzle.The two layers of glass functions as ventilation shafts, as well as artistic decoration. The intriguing building sits on the shoreline like a huge boulder.

The landscaping budget was cut to the bone, but the original ideas were kept intact and the rugged materials and unpretentious finish suits the city of Reykjavik perfectly.

This is modern architecture at its best, with innovative ideas and team-spirit from all parties involved. In close cooperating the engineers and artists, the architects have created a true masterpiece.


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