Once again the “Warming Huts v.2014: An Art + Architecture Competition on Ice: has been a huge success. This competition, endorsed by the Manitoba Association of Architects, invited architects from all over the world to submit proposals for warming huts online at www.warminghuts.com
After receiving over 190 entries the jury blindly chose three submissions that best “push the envelope of design, craft and art.” This year the three winners are Canadian, with two of the winning entries coming from Toronto (Workshop Architecture Inc., and Raw Design Inc.) and one from Vancouver (Kate Busby & Bella Totino).
Every year the architects push the boundaries in terms of inspiration, design, and materials used. There was no theme for this year’s competition which produced a diverse set of winning warming huts.
Workshop Architecture’s winning submission is entitled Red Blanket. Recently photographed in situ, it is a visual marker against the surrounding white winter palette. It can be seen by skaters far in the distance: first as a red speck, then, as you skate closer, you will see the dense fabric panels swaying under heavy winds. The wall of thick felt is angled to protect skaters from the prevailing wind and provide a sunny spot. Each of the 10 panels is sized to be the width and length of a single roll of bright red felted wool. A rod is affixed at each panel’s top end and hung from the underside of one of the bridges crossing the Assiniboine or Red River. The bottom ends of these monumental-scaled panels will act as a warm blanket for people to wrap themselves in, one or two at a time.