Rifting Lands



Personal Info

Name: Sara Maria Camagni

Nationality: Italian

Institution / Company: Designer and Master Student at Architectural Association Msc Sustainable Environmental Design (London)


Instagram: sara.chefacose

Facebook: Sara Maria Camagni ( https://www.facebook.com/sara.m.camagni)

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/sara-maria-camagni/



Name: Carlheinz Christoph von Geyso 

Nationality: German/ South African

Institution / Company:  Architect at Nordic — Office of Architecture (Oslo)


Instagram: carlheinzzz

Facebook: Carlheinz Von Geyso (facebook.com/carlheinz.vongeyso)

LinkedIn:  https://www.linkedin.com/in/carlheinz-von-geyso/



Name: Eva Schwärzler

Nationality: Austrian

Institution / Company:  Architect at Nordic — Office of Architecture (Oslo)


Instagram: eva_rgb000

Facebook: Eva Schwärzler ( facebook.com/eva.schwaerzler)

LinkedIn: https: https://www.linkedin.com/in/eva-schwaerzler/


Name: Georg H. Erharter 

Nationality: Austrian

Institution / Company:  Engineering Geologist at geo.zt, Assistant at Graz University of Technology


LinkedIn: https: https://www.linkedin.com/in/georg-h-erharter-b514b4125/



-HONOURABLE MENTION of Non Architecture Award Competition | Category: Architecture


Rifting Lands is our proposal for a viewing tower located at Grjótagjá in Iceland, whose unique landscape is defined by a several meters wide fissure which expresses the diverging plate boundary between North America and Eurasia. 


The design strength of the tower is drawn from its context, circulating both experientially and physically through continuity and division. The duality of the site is formally expressed into the tower massing and gives the building a strong identity as a landmark and meaningful destination, perceivable already from far away. 

The tower itself is divided into two shifted masses, which serve both the programmatic ascent up the tower and the spatial functions below. Visitors are offered the opportunity to enter by walking on top of the building wing, following the gently inclined steps, or to enter through the ground floor. 

The gradual ascent up the wing lets the visitor access the public entrance to the viewing tower on first floor. Here visitors will be welcomed at the reception desk, enjoy the cosiness of the wooden interiors, warm themselves up, enjoy the cafe area below or move on to the bathing caves, pathways and bridges spanning the two continents.

Ascending the double flights of stairs, visitors are constantly offered views of the fissure and surrounding landscape. The ascending experience through the split tower culminates at the elevated platform on the top floor, where visitors can enjoy the open air and a 360-degree view of the stunning fissure and volcanic landscape.


Project Type:

Observation tower and visitor centre


Jury Comments

– noa*

The two towers emerge from the ground almost as if two tectonic plates had collided, with dynamism and a crazy elegance. The wooden observation tower seems to take you to a place on the edge of imagination.  We wish we were there.



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