ØYA: sociable and sustainable meeting places at the world's greenest music festival
Every year, tens of thousands of people attend the popular Øya Festival in Oslo to see artists from Norway and beyond; from major international stars to emerging new artists. When the goal is to be among the world’s most sustainable festivals, details such as furniture also play an important role. That's why in 2019, Vestre had the honour of creating sociable furniture zones adapted to the different areas of the festival.
A music festival that cares about sustainability
Just like Vestre, Øya Festival cares about sustainability. The festival sets its sights high and aims to be one of the best festivals in the world in terms of sustainable festival development. Their work has been highly successful, and they were named the world’s greenest festival in 2019 by A Greener Festival (AGF).
That same year, Vestre had the pleasure of furnishing four of Øya’s festival areas.
‘We got in touch with Vestre because they are such an exciting company, and they also have a lot of the same values as us in terms of sustainability’, explains Cathrine Røsseland, sponsorship manager for Øya Festival.
Social furniture zones with different solutions and colours
As festivals involve a lot of walking and standing about, it’s important to have good options for taking breaks. Øya had three main furniture requirements. Firstly, they wanted to create sociable zones where people could sit down and relax. They also wanted the furniture to be adapted to the area where it would be placed. Lastly, they wanted robust furniture that could withstand the weather—after all, Norwegian summers are unpredictable.
Stian Brinch Skaara, designer at Anderssen & Voll, was involved in designing the spaces for Vestre.
‘Early on in the process I knew that I wanted to create a backdrop for the situations that would unfold in each zone. It became almost like a game, using Vestre's varied collection and colour palette’, he says.
Skaara wanted to use solid colours to define and highlight the different zones in the festival grounds. He was particularly interested in sociable meeting places and the interactions that would take place in each individual area. This was the basis for the layout of the different zones.
Pink eating area
Unlike a regular eating area that often only has rectangular tables and benches, the Buzz picnic table was used to create a more open atmosphere. Here, guests could gather round circular tables with access from all sides.
The series comprises: Buzz, April Go planter
Green guest area
This zone was placed right in the middle of everything: stages, bars and food stalls. Code square was chosen for this area, which helped transform it into a social space. The composition of Code square provided both seating and table surfaces, while putting several on top of one another elevated the terrain. Planters from the April Go series complemented Code nicely.
‘All kinds of situations could unfold here, and that’s why Code square was chosen. It’s the ultimate kit for creating varied, urban meeting places’, says Skaara.
The series comprises: Code square, April Go planter
On the slope overlooking the festival grounds, Øya wanted to create a meeting place where people could sit together and look out over the festival. A small platform was created with a furnished area on top where visitors could sit down. The sociable step bench Stoop enabled guests to get an even better view. Furniture from the Stripes series was dotted around the area, while the Bloc sun bench was positioned for people to rest on. The result was a space where people could properly relax while enjoying the sun and music at the same time.
The series comprises: Stoop, Stripes, Bloc, April Go planter
Adapted bike parking
As Øya is an urban festival, many people use bikes as a means of transport. It was therefore crucial for the festival to facilitate this. In order to properly accommodate all the bikes, around 60 Berg bike racks were set up with a total of 650 spaces.
‘This area was very well used and extremely popular. As a sustainable festival, we want to ensure that people can get to Øya without driving a car, so it's important to offer bike parking’, says sponsorship manager Cathrine Røsseland.
The series comprises: Berg
Reusing furniture and meeting places at major fairs
Øya was a perfect project for Vestre and what we stand for. Festivals attract people of all different ages and backgrounds, so our desire to bring people together through good design was put to good use here. An extra plus was being able to contribute to Øya's goal of becoming one of the world’s most sustainable festivals—music to the ears of a furniture manufacturer aiming for similar accolades in its own field.
With this goal in mind, it was of course important both for Øya and Vestre that the furniture have a life beyond the festival. And it did, at both fairs and events. Oslo Design Fair, Designers Saturday, IFLA World Congress in Oslo and the Frankfurt Book Fair have all used the furniture to create zones for relaxation and socialising. These events, along with many others, can continue to use this furniture for generations to come.
Location: Tøyen Park, Oslo
Client: Øyafestivalen AS
Designer: Anderssen & Voll
From a congested and soulless area to a pedestrian street bustling with life