Floating Mirrorcube

architects Tham & Videgård
project Tree Hotel, Harads, Sweden
written by Catherine Slessor


From the dark fairy tale of Hansel and Gretel to the tectonic exemplar of Laugier’s primitive hut, the notion of the isolated dwelling in the forest has a compelling cultural and psychological resonance. Welcoming or sinister, ‘the cabin in the woods’ is a familiar trope that extends back to the origins of architecture and human settlement. Now, however, the once disarming wilderness of the forest is seen as a restorative balm for jaded urbanites keen to reboot and rediscover the natural world. The common Scandinavian practice of keeping a cabin in the woods for weekends and holidays perhaps accounts for the equable Nordic psyche, respectfully at home with nature.