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LÖVÅSEN PETROGLYPH CENTER - Paper Covers Rock Assembly building 1:100



Site plan 1:2000




Rock art has been created in many cultures, independently of one another, around the world. The desire to figuratively depict life’s events is universal, as can be seen in Bronze Age cultures in Tanum as well as Val Camonica. The opportunity for insight into our global common denominators, is highly valued. UNESCO recognizes these World Heritage Sites’ outstanding value to humanity to equal that of Roman & British Aqueducts and Gothic cathedrals.

Houses in Val Camonica

Ships in Tanum


Access route

Visitor entry route The harsh granite and archaic tools creates by emergence, catalysed by the hands of Bronze Age Man, a peculiar aesthetic. The depictions are thus coherent in their varying motifs.

Trapezoidal wood pieces with chamfered edges

Walkway support joint Detail C-C 1:5

Rock carving shelter 1:100

The pieces are joined in pairs to form arrow-shaped elements

Multiple elements constitute the Miura Ori pattern

Repeated sideways to support the assembly building.

The multi-faceted facade forms a stage for the daylight to create a play of shadow.





Wood is another global common denominator. Crafted even by archaic cultures into objects necessary for their day-to-day existence, the material today reaches higher expressive potential through digital manufacturing processes and CNC milling. Cross-bracing with cables at either end of the tunnel-shaped structure provide lateral stability. Also, the structural organization simplifies possible expansion of the shelter due to increased capacity demands or exposure of more instances of art.

Lövåsen Rock Carving Center serves a complimentary function to Vitlycke Museum in Tanum. The investigation of Bronze Age culture in Bohuslän is carried out by studying rock carvings on site. As an aggregate of repeated units, the shelter is distinctly separate from the many instances of art across the rock face. The topography creates a natural place for an archaeologist to provide information to visitors.

A building for studies of the rock carvings should be aesthetically distinct from them. Therefore, in place of material causes, a pattern idea is the superior cause of the building’s expression. The idea is in this case found in the Japanese art of rigid origami. Through regular folding a simple sheet of paper is granted a distinct structure. Abstracted from its material, only the actual idea, i. e. the folding pattern, remains.

Regular origami patterns are applied to cross-laminated wood sheeting to create a family of structures. The assembly building is composed from a traditional Yoshimura pattern where the wood elements are triangleshaped. The rock carving shelter is composed of isosceles trapezoids, assembled to a similar structure. The geometrical structural elements provide a contrasting backdrop to exhibited pieces of rock art. The walkway linking the two buildings, and also leading around the rock panel, is based upon the Miura Ori pattern.

Section perspective B-B

Section A-A


C Olof Tydén ARK 295 Architecture and optimized structures 2011-01-26

Concept models


Paper Covers Rock

Response group

Light studies

Presentation model

One of the concept models, as interpreted by Jonas

Relationship between rock face and structure; function of spaces. Clarifying the sloping topography.



Assembly building

Rock carving shelter


traditional Yoshimura pattern

modified Yoshimura pattern

Miura Ori pattern

The nodes are extended into new lines, which are folded as ridges. The valley folds are also extended to comply with this displacement.

Parallell serrated folds, alternately ridge and valley.

Two sets of parallell diagonal lines form the ridges. The nodes in which the diagonal lines intersect form points along vertical lines. These lines constitute valleys. ridge

The vertical folds also alternate between ridge and valley for every serration to enable the simultaneous folding.




The dxf-file is imported into the folding software, which folds in steps. Halfway to the finished structure, and the convex crosssection is apparent.

Origami tradition doesn’t allow cuts, but in this case some kind of entrance was required. The building was already oriented with regard to enabling views through panoramic windows. The logical step was to create top-hinged doors, each composed of two facets.

A single arch is individually folded.

This pattern does not produce a convex crosssection like the Yoshimura. Hence it is suited to form a structure extended horizontally.

The multiplied arches are arranged radially around a common centre, to match the site topography.

When repeated lengthways, it serves as supports for the walkway. Repeated sideways, it forms supports for the assembly building.

Petroglyph Center  
Petroglyph Center  

3rd year project Architecture & Engineering Chalmers University of Technology