Automower house

Automower house A house for Husqvarna

Project information
Location
Oslo
Client
Husquerna
Year
2014

Project contact

Kurt Singstad

+47 918 03 727

singstad@mad.no

High technology and children’s book characters were fused together when Mad was asked by Husqvarna to create large architecture in a very small scale.

When Husqvarna were to prepare their third generation automatic lawn mowers, they asked customers what they thought of their gardener robots. The answers were surprisingly that many owners had such a close relationship with their machines that they gave them their own names and small houses.

Husqvarna wanted to build further on the affiliation between robots and their owners. They contacted five recognized, Northern European architects and asked them to design their own houses for their Automower.

"They contacted five recognized, Northern European architects and asked them to design their own houses for their Automower"

Close to the nature

In Norway, Mad architects were contacted, and were also asked to create an alternative design for the lawn mower. The result was a house and an Automower who has a story to tell. For even though the garden is a fixed space and a lawn mower has a mechanical motor, it is still all about nature when the grass is cut under the golden summer sunshine.

Our response was to create a design where Husqvarna’s latest products acts as a ladybug supplemented with a house made of aluminium where the expression was coloured by an unmistakable kinship with a pine cone.

Using simple logic, we chose the cone shape because pine or fir cones can reside on any lawn where there are large trees nearby. This resulted in a recognizable shape that will never be foreign when placed in the garden.

As in a children’s book

We also wanted to turn the mower into something already belonging to the garden – the ladybug. This simple, associative figuration combined with a house – also reminding of an object belonging on the lawn – create a connection between high technology and our daily lives.

The design turns the unaccustomed into something familiar and safe, as if the technical innovations are characters taken out of a children’s book.

"The design turns the unaccustomed into something familiar and safe"

In good company

In addition to Mad arkitekter, offices like BIG Architects and J. Mayer H. has contributed to the upgrade of Husqvarna products making the lawn mower houses appear in many different forms and appearances.

This project was realized in 2013. At this moment (2016) the robotic mowers are already far cheaper and more available than three years ago, and in another three years’ time it may very well be that one can buy one at Clas Ohlson and that this is common to own.

Yet it is worth reminding that it is while the technology is fresh and manufacturers really need to convince the market about the product’s relevance that the greatest innovations tend to occur. And we are bold enough to see our motorized ladybug as a possible design classic.

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