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Houseboat to Ho | Husbåd til Ho

"Houseboat to Ho" is an artwork and construction developed by artist Simon Starling specifically for Ho because the city is located in a low-lying area threatened by high water levels.

"Husbåd til Ho" is part locally inspired country house and part exotic boat built using two related but geographically distinct techniques: reed boat building and carpentry. The sheet-like hybrid structure is thus split between land and sea, and is the result of a cross-cultural collaboration - an exchange of ancient techniques and stories between Danish roofers and Bolivian reed boat builders.

When culture and craftsmanship meet

Reed boat building and thatching use the same raw material: reed bundles. In the hybrid structure "Houseboat to Ho", where a house becomes a boat and a boat becomes a house, there is a smooth transition from boat to roof. The orientation of the reeds changes according to their position in the structure: from the buoyant horizontal bundles at the bottom of the boat, which become the upward-curving bow and stern pieces, to the weatherproof, perpendicular bundles in the reed-covered roof. This shift from horizontal to vertical and back again is also emblematic of the cross-cultural collaboration, combining the two ancient building techniques of two otherwise separate cultures in the northern and southern hemispheres into one composite construction.

It is truly a masterpiece that you should take a closer look at when you visit the North Sea.

The project is supported by the Danish Arts Foundation and Varde Municipality's Art Committee.