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Solar Egg – a sauna from Riksbyggen

Solar Egg was created by artist duo Bigert & Bergström for Riksbyggen in April 2017 as a gift to the town of Kiruna. The golden egg sauna has since won the hearts of visitors and design award juries around the globe.

Riksbyggen's new residential projects in Kiruna are to inaugurate the city's already world famous transformation. This is celebrated with an art project that takes the sun as catalyst for creativity, care, hope and togetherness.

As a symbol of new beginnings Solar Egg was commissioned by Swedish housing company Riksbyggen and created by Swedish artists Mats Bigert and Lars Bergström. The saunas exterior consists of 69 golden plates reflecting the landscape and its inhabitants. It is heated by a heart-shaped wood-fired burner and can accommodate up to eight persons. Solar Egg captures Kiruna's fantastic spirit and at the same time it's old sauna traditions.

Since april 2017, Solar Egg has invited sauna bathing visitors in numerous stunning locations: Björkliden, Paris, Stockholm, Copenhagen and Gällivare. 

For the first time, visitors across the Atlantic get the chance to experience Solar Egg up close. Between 6th of March and the 28th of April The American Swedish Institute, Minneapolis, Minnesota will host the sauna and welcome visitors to explore it inside out. In opening the exhibition, the artists behind the Solar Egg, Mats Bigert and Lars Bergström, will visit and talk about the art piece.

– An important part of The American Swedish Institute is sharing knowledge about culture, sustainability, migration and art related to Sweden. So we are very proud to be able to show this world renown art piece Solar Egg by Bigert & Bergström for Riksbyggen, says Karen R. Nelson, Marketing & Communications Manager at The American Swedish Institute.

A prize-winning viral success
Going viral in social media and architecture blogs, more than a billion people around the world has had the chance to read about the unique art piece as of October 2018. Not only the public has taken Solar Egg to their hearts, but also quite a few design award juries.

For their collaboration Riksbyggen, Bigert & Bergström was awarded winner of Swedish Arts & Business Awards 2018. In 2017 it won a Red Dot Award, Stålbyggnadspriset and German Design Award. It received a silver medal in the Swedish Design Award and London International Awards.

In November 2018 Time Out released a bucket-list of "The very Best things to do", among the 50 items on the list, Solar Egg came in third.

Artistic duo behind Solar Egg
Bigert & Bergström have a longstanding fascination with humanity’s relationship to climate, nature, energy and technology. They gained international prominence with their climate chamber designed for World Expo in Lisbon in 1998. In 2015, Bigert & Bergström covered the peak of Sweden’s highest mountain, Kebnekaise, with an insulating coat to examine whether geo-engineering could help to slow glacial melting. Solar Egg shifts that focus to practical use.

Riksbyggen in Kiruna
Riksbyggen is developing 250 new apartments in the Kiruna region within the next 10 years. The first 47 new condominiums are located right at the ski slopes of Loussavaara with an amazing view over the mountains and the arctic environment. For more information visit the website of Brf Fjällvyn.

Riksbyggen’s residential apartments at Luossabacken will be one of the first construction projects of Kiruna’s city transformation and will have views of the Arctic fells. A housing cooperative owned by its members, Riksbyggen wants to give Kiruna a unique natural and cultural experience that reflects the city’s location and puts people at the forefront.

Solar Egg – facts

  • Solar Egg was commissioned by Swedish housing company Riksbyggen and created by Swedish artist duo Bigert & Bergström in April 2017.
  • It is 4,5 meters high and 12,6 meters in circumference.
  • It weighs 2750 kg.
  • The wood burner is shaped like a human heart and weighs 750 kg.
  • Assembling the 69 golden plates and 1512 screws takes about 4 to 5 days.
  • Since April 2017 Solar Egg by Bigert & Bergström for Riksbyggen has visited Kiruna, Björkliden, Paris and Artipelag, Stockholm.