The architectural firm HJARK, founded in 2019, has attracted attention for what is called parametric
design. The owner of the studio, Hulda Jónsdóttir, explains such design as the creation of unusual
forms in architecture where, at the design stage, factors such as the weather, the use of daylight and
the sun are taken into account in the foreground as well as the fact that the wind is blocked – and
problems such as wind tunnels is avoided to the best of their ability.

Hulda Jónsdóttir

Hulda, who studied all over Europe, won the Velux award (use of daylight in architecture) for her
final project in her master’s degree at the Royal Academy in Copenhagen (KADK). Hulda’s focus in studies was parametric design, which is leading with ease in all her projects.

When asked, Hulda says that during her twelve years abroad, she has worked in France, Spain,
London and most recently at BIG (Bjarke Ingels Group) in Copenhagen. The architecture firm BIG
architecture firm is at the forefront of modern architecture and has gained a reputation for
ecological and resourceful design solutions. After her time at BIG, Hulda made the decision to come
home and start her own studio here in Iceland.

Leiðarhöfði

In December 2022, HJARK – in collaboration with Tiago Sa, architect and owner of the Portuguese
studio Sastudio, together with Áslaug Traustadóttir landscape architect and co-owner of Landmótun –
won first place at the WAF award festival, for their proposal for the design of Leiðarhöfði, a
destination and outdoor recreation area in Höfn in Hornafjörður. They competed against some of the
biggest architectural firms in the world, so winning was a pleasant surprise.

WAF, The World Architecture Festival, is an international architectural conference intended for the
world’s leading architectural firms. When Hulda and her colleagues won the prize for Leiðarhöfði, around 500 proposals were received from over 50 countries.

The proposal also won the WAN (World Architecture News Awards), “We received the bronze awardsthat time”;says Hulda, who can be proud of her success, since in a very short time HJARK has become a world-awarded architectural firm.

Kindergarten in Urriðaholt

HJARK, in collaboration with Sastudio, had also worked on the project A Kindergarten in Urriðaholt,
which was also nominated for a WAF award, although in a different category. The kindergarten won
first prize in the Iceland Kindergarten competition and got praised for the way the building adapts to
its environment as well how the internal flow emphasizes daylight. In addition, the design meets the
requirements of the Nordic eco-label Svanurinn, which stands for high environmental and
sustainability standards, the kindergarten in Urriðaholt being the first of its kind in Iceland.

Kindergarten in Urriðaholt

“Tiago, the owner of Sastudeo is my co-designer in the projects for the kindergarten in Urriðaholt
and Leiðarhöfði, as well as other projects – but we work extremely well together and both have very
big and innovative ideas,” says Hulda, who says she is very happy with the results so far. The
direction is to continue to participate in competitions and to work well on the projects they are
involved with each time. “The most important thing is to build a good team because you can’t do anything alone”, points out Hulda, but they are just getting started and therefore have much more to offer in the world of architecture.

Groundbreaking held for Kindergarten in Urriðaholt

Due to its success, HJARK has received further requests for designs and collaborations.”Among the other projects we have currently, says Hulda, are various residential projects in Iceland, small and large, old as well as new, store renovation for Fraiser Group UK and more. We always give 100% in each situation to understand what each project needs. The needs can be quite different – an old house in the center of Reykjavík, a modern kindergarten or even a luxurious hunting lodge on a mountain. That’s what I like so much about the job – how varied it is, she says with a smile. No day is the same.

She adds that these days HJARK is looking for more team members because recently four employees
went back to school. In case anyone is interested in working at an award-winning architectural firm!

Leiðarhöfði

Kindergarten in Urriðaholt

Kindergarten in Urriðaholt

Kindergarten in Urriðaholt

Leiðarhöfði

Leiðarhöfði

Leikskólinn í Urriðaholti

HJARK – Hulda Jóns Arkitektúr ehf
Urriðaholtsstræti 26, 210 Garðabær
+354 865 0649
https://www.huldajons.com/
[email protected]