Diploma 2018: "THE HAT-HOUSE AND THE SPIRIT OF PLACE-a mnemonic investigation of a town house in Trondheim (what it was, what it is and what it might be)" by Karoline Kolby

Tutors: Thomas Wiesner (APP), Marco Casagrande (DAV), Harald Røstvik (Sustainability), Anne Sofie H. Bjelland (TTA) 


This project is a journey within one of the oldest wooden houses in the city centre of Trondheim, Norway.  The site, the house in Bersvendveita 16, with its curious shape and history, was to serve as a pertri-dish for experimentation of the acting between a city, a house and its inhabitants.

Distilling the memories of the three hatters who once occupied this space, the history of the house through its lifespan and the city around, and my own fragmented recollection, what is extracted is the spirit of the hat house.

This project is a process towards developing a method of reading and understanding a built condition, discussing it beyond the pragmatic structure. History, the city, materials, elements and its people are all contributors, all carriers of memories that together can enhance the understanding of the genius loci. This may be of importance when working with a historical structure and questions around restoration are raised; What is the original?

The hat house might appear in first glance, insignificant, humbly sitting in the cross of two alleys. But extracting the significant moments of time, creating the house of the house, its character, the hat-house is in fact an antechamber - to room after room of an endless vanished palace of memories. If you let it, this house will speak to you.