Sep 2009

ICEHOTEL - Designing Art

Daedalus designer Joshua Space both draws on and enhances his skill in product development through his art. In December of 2008, when many would head for warmer climes, Josh spent his vacation far above the Arctic Circle in Jukkasjärvi, creating a room for Sweden's famous ICEHOTEL.

Josh, along with Barcelona-based industrial designer Jens Paulus, created Inner Space, a room of snow and ice "where solar and lunar worlds converge." When realizing the room, Josh and Jens's process echoed that of a design project: brainstorming themes, concept sketching, computer modeling, and conference calls--all on a demanding schedule.

Fashioned from blocks of ice cut out of the frozen Torne River, ICEHOTEL is one of Sweden's top winter attractions. Guests book a night in one of the unique ice rooms constructed each year by 15 artists' teams selected in an international competition. Working with chain saws and forklifts in weather that dipped to 30 degrees below zero, Josh and Jens constructed their room in 2 ― weeks, wielding all of their design skills to realize a large work of environmental art.

See more of the Ice Hotel.

Josh has exhibited his lighting design and installation art in several Pittsburgh group and solo shows. A graduate of CMU, he spent his junior year in Helsinki, where he created ice sculptures that responded to the natural phenomenon of the Northern Lights.

Photographs by Hans-Olaf Utsi and Jens Paulus