The Lighthouse Room by Sweco
The classroom, situated on the first floor opposite the Auditorium and formerly known as room 120, is a unique space deigned for dialogue with up to 13 persons (half a normal school class) with a circular formation to favour equal inclusion for each individual. A democratic layout in which no seat is superior to another and where all may equally see and hear one another, sitting around the campfire. The room gets its name from the lighthouse-like structure situated in the middle of the room.
Outside the campfire room there are study places and an artwork by Martin Wickström: The Lighthouse Room - eight oilpaintings depicting lighthouses.
The Lighthouse Room by Sweco - a text by the architecht Jonas Kjellander (2022-03-21)
Communication between individuals has been the core of human social activity and development since the beginning of mankind. Language is likely to have originated when trust and cooperation were found to be beneficial. Cooperation proved to be inalienable for survival. To this day the strongest human needs may be labeled inclusion, fellowship, and the sense of belonging. Stronger even than the need to still hunger.
Dialogue is the compelling tool for human development. Consequently, we would expect to find physical environments fully optimized to this end. The connection between a physical framework and human behavior or wellbeing cannot be stressed sufficiently. But strangely enough we totally lack physical spaces which are optimized for dialogue. In case of the smallest groups of 2-4 individuals most normal spaces are sufficient, whether an enclosed room or an open space such as a café or a lobby. For other group constellations we only find solutions with compromises accommodating to different situations with contradictory requirements, but nothing designed, without compromises, merely for in real life quality conversation.
Body language and facial expression are subtle linguistic elements equally important to a dialogue as the spoken word itself. True quality conversation is therefore not really feasible in larger groups over approximately 18-20 persons. However, for intermediate groups up to 16-18 persons it is possible to offer a physical solution optimized to the purpose in terms of ergonomics, acoustics, lighting and aesthetics.
This is what the Lighthouse Room is about. A unique space deigned for dialogue with up to 13 persons (half a normal school class) with a circular formation to favor equal inclusion for each individual. A democratic layout in which no seat is superior to another and where all may equally see and hear one another.
It is a place reminiscent to the earliest settings from the origins of language for the purpose of dialogue. Dialogue and more specifically storytelling are the mother to literature, as developed much later around 3400BC. Behind the so-called reading crisis we may discern a growing shortage of in real life communication, of inclusive conversation involving active listening. Storytelling and literature alike are the indispensable tools for empathy, the capability of compassion and profound identification with fellow humans. Consequently, the keys to solidarity and democracy itself.
The Lighthouse Room at SSE is a response to the historical settings for such dialogues found in all cultures through history from unpretentious storytelling around the campfire to learned conversation in the Roman exedra.
Open for students!
The Lighthouse room is now open for students on the following weekdays and times:
Book the Lighthouse room via Info Center
The room will be open for bookings on Thursdays only and by staff only. If you wish to book the room, please contact Info Center via email email@example.com alternatively via phone 08- 736 90 00.
Please note, that food and beverage is not allowed inside!