Background and activities

Keywords/ field of interest


·       PEDAGOGICAL PHILOSOPHY/ «Making is thinking», soma-aesthetics, aesthetical

        thinking, identity, culture, formation and horizons



·       PLACE, SPACE AND ACTION/ Architecture, urbanism, art, performance and writing


Nina Haarsaker is an architect with special interest in the relationship between aesthetic theory, place and the making of space. How can unexpected ways of organizing our surroundings make us understand and experience things differently? In addition to teaching at NTNU, she enjoys arranging intensive workshops with hands on methods from the concept of “making is thinking”.

She works at the Department of Architecture and Technology Studies (IAT) at the Faculty of Architecture and Design (AD) at NTNU as assistance professor. Nina graduated from NTNU in 2001, after both philosophy studies and several years abroad studying architecture at UP Madrid/Spain, TU Delft/Netherlands and LTH Lund/Sweden.

Professional experience: Several years as sole proprietorship TiPi, with resent interesting, partly self-built housing project, together with partner: . Professional experience from three years at local office ArkiplanAS in Trondheim; working mainly on school buildings and competitions, and on suburban large-scale housing projects.

Pedagogical experience: employed full time since 2011 leading and/or teaching at several different basic and master courses. She has subject-responsibility for the Master Diploma program in Architecture since 2017. Since 2015 she has been invited to lead different hands on-workshops based on the concept of “making is thinking” through TRANSark (

Didactical focus: Main field of interest is on creative processes and learning-processes; methods and design-tools based on the concepts of “lateral thinking” and “making is thinking”, both for professionals and beginners of form studies. She advocates open reflection on aesthetical attitudes and bodily habits through different tools, interpretation- and form exercises.

Tools: digital and analogue drawings, plan, section, perspective, words and writings, photo, film, silk-screen printing, printing, model-work, sandbox, bricolage, collages, full-scale testing, methods on lateral thinking, synectics/forced relationship, abstract/concrete and different group-process-exercises


FORMGROUP AT AD/NTNU; Nina is part of the departments FORMGROUP and Trans ARK at the Department of Architecture and Technology.

NTNU WOOD; Nina is part of the departments WOOD-GROUP. She has eight years of experience in full-scale building with first year students, building with wood as main material.

She presented at ICSA International Conference 2016 on Tectonics the paper “An Aesthetic Approach to Full scale Building in Teaching Architecture” written together with college Guro Wiksten Brenk. The work investigates full-scale building as an educational tool for first year architect student, comparing learning outcome of two different pedagogical attitudes in light of theories of soma-esthetics and aesthetical theory of Richard Shusterman and Dorte Jørgensen.

Keywords: action research through full-scale educational masterplans/ learning by doing/ process-thinking / reflecting on complexity through aesthetical thinking as theoretical framework.




·        INT. WORKSHOP “ILS; Innovative Learning Spaces”, Alghero Sardinia, Italy

·        FESTIVAL: participating with full-scale work intervention and exhibition with our master-students (  at the transformation area of Nyhavna; “Hendelser på havna 2018”;

·        INT. WORKSHOP Trans Ark and "Making is thinking": invited by IDW Antwerp: "RESILIENCE" discussed in our workshop "REmaking is REthinking", see webpage:


·        WORKSHOP: "Making is thinking" workshop for the Architect office PIR II at our FORM-lab.

·        INT.WORKSHOP in Athens, EAAE workshop on European Association for Architecture Education:

·        INT.WORKSHOP Trans Ark and "Making is thinking": invited by IDW Antwerp: "DISPLACEMENT" discussed in our workshop "displace-place-display-play", see webpage:



·        WORKSHOP Trans Ark and "Making is thinking": invited by ADLS Antwerp discussing "CONSISTENCY" 6-11.Febraury, MIT Trondheim 9.mars both together with Johanna Gullberg

·        WORKSHOP Invited at KTH Stockholm 4.april at Full Scale Studio Master-course invited by Malin Åberg Wennerholm and Ebba Hallin.


·        IDEAPROJECT: "The Re-use house; house for elementary school and football club at Utleira" - KEYWORDS the re-use of local materials; clay and wood.


·        BLOG housing project –DAY-TO-DAY- .

      KEYWORDS: local materials, local adaptation to place, and hybrid energy-solution.

·        FULLSCALE; “WOOD-LI-DO” Full-scale building with first year students.


·        FULLSCALE; “MONSTERGATE” Full-scale building with first year students.


·        FULLSCALE; “LYDBRYTER” Full-scale building with first year students.


·        FULLSCALE; “TROMMEROM” Full-scale building with first year students.



BOOK- WORKING TITLE: Årstidshus: different temperature-zones in Nordic housing projects; learning from history and beyond”

DIG.BOOKS- WORKING TITLE: Short digital and free available handbooks on "HOW to: work with clay plaster" and "HOW to: charring facade panel as surface treatment / Charred wood".

BOOK- WORKING TITLE: On pedagogical experience: “Making is thinking- learning from didactics of architecture”, TransARK:




Scientific, academic and artistic work

A selection of recent journal publications, artistic productions, books, including book and report excerpts. See all publications in the database

Journal publications

  • Rødne, Gro; Haarsaker, Nina Katrine; Gullberg, Johanna Sofia. (2018) remaking is rethinking. reACT by Design.
  • Rødne, Gro; Haarsaker, Nina Katrine. (2017) displace place display play. reACT by Design.

Artistic productions

  • Haarsaker, Nina Katrine. (2014) Byens farger. Colour in the city, Trondhjem kunstforening. 2014.
  • Haarsaker, Nina Katrine; Schmidt, August; Gilberg, Arnstein Olav; Melhus, Britt Renee; Aadahl, Gunhild. (2014) WOODliDO. Institutt for byggekunst form og farge, Fakultet for arkitektur og billedkunst, NTNU, Krigsseilerplassen. 2014.
  • Haarsaker, Nina Katrine; Gjerde, Sevrin. (2013) Detaljprosjekt bolig på Blaklia; "Årstidshus". Nina Haarsaker og Svrin Gjerde. 2013.

Part of book/report

  • Haarsaker, Nina Katrine; Brenk, Guro Wiksten. (2016) An inclusive aesthetic approach to full scale building. Structures and Architecture Beyond their Limits.


  • Nordby, Anne Sigrid; Haarsaker, Nina Katrine. (2014) PASSIV KLIMATISERING Flere veier til målet om passivhusnivå i Tek 2015? Rapport til Husbanken / DiBK. Husbanken. 2014.
  • Haase, Matthias; Haarsaker, Nina Katrine; Gjerde, Sevrin. (2012) Forprosjekt Blakli. 2012.