2.04.2005 - 22.05.2005
The "Young Swiss Architecture" exhibition continues a series that started in autumn 1996. The aim is to shed light on the work of a new generation of architects and present their first built work or interesting competition entries to the public. The word "young" does not refer primarily to the age of the invitees, but to the fact that they are at the beginning of their careers. The series started with three presentations about the work of young Basel architecture practices: 1996: Buol & Zünd, Miller & Maranta, Steinmann & Schmid, 1998: Christian Dill, Osolin & Plüss, Luca Selva & Jean-Pierre Wymann, 2000: Carmen Quade, sab architekten, Andreas Stöcklin. It continued with a presentation of competition entries for a pavilion in the courtyard of Madrid's Conde Duque culture centre in 2003. The AM showed projects by five young Swiss architecture practices from Basel (sab architekten), Chur (Conradin Clavuot), Zurich (Baumann & Roserens), western Switzerland (2b architectes) and Ticino (Buzzi & Buzzi) at the same time as the ARCO art fair in Madrid.
The current exhibition features three architecture practices from different parts of the country: bonnard / wœffray architectes from Monthey, LOST Architekten from Basel, UNDEND from Zurich. When choosing the practices the museum deliberately avoided trying to construct a sense of common ideas in terms of either content or form, and it was also not seeking calculated confrontation. The exhibition focuses on innovative and individual approaches that deserve public attention.
Behind the enigmatic name UNDEND are Dieter Dietz and Urs Egg, who have been working together from Zurich since 1997. The way UNDEND show their work in the Architekturmuseum and the media they choose to do this are typical of their approach. Before an architectural design settles into a fixed form or appears as a model an idea will often be subject to the influence of various creative media. And conversely, photography can influence the design process for a future project. Their entry for the international competition for an urban development concept for a derelict railway site in Osaka, Japan in 2002 shows how deftly Dietz and Egg build free associations into their designs. Using the title "Romanticizing Nature", they proposed introducing the shape of a slice of the Eiger-Mönch-Jungfrau mountain massif into the competition area as a high-rise typology. The extension for the wonderful Freudenberg school complex in Zurich by Jacques Schader is different: this 2004 competition design keeps at a respectful distance. UNDEND are presenting their work in galleries 1 and 2 of the Architecture Museum, and revealing their general approach at the same time, using photographs by Roland Tännler, 3D animations by Marc Droz, models, computer generated drawings and plans.
bonnard/wœffray architectes, Geneviève Bonnard and Denis Wœffray, who have run a joint architecture practice in Monthey since 1992, can already look back at a considerable number of realized buildings. Both the School of Social and Educational Studies in Lausanne, 2001-02, and the residential and studio building in Monthey, 2002-03, show their working methods, reduction to a few simple but precise creative and technical solutions. This minimalism is characterized and redeemed from being an end in itself by the fact the bonnard/wœffray architectes use it as a clever strategy for responding to tighter general working conditions in their field of work. Bonnard and Wœffray are showing their work in gallery 2 at the Architekturmuseum, concentrating on a single presentation medium using two video projections. These are the result of an exhibition of their work that can be seen at the EPFL in Lausanne until 25 March.
Dietrich Lohmann and Christoph Standke, who operate as LOST Architekten, have been working together in Basel since 1999. Recently, alongside residential and commercial buildings - their joint career started with the renovation of a villa in Riehen by Otto Salvisberg - LOST Architekten have increasingly drawn attention to themselves through projects in the sphere of buildings used for public and cultural purposes, for example with their design for renewal/refurbishment of the ‘Kuppel’ (dome) in Basel. Their entry convinced by presenting a lucid urban sign, won a prize and was recommended for further work. Lohmann and Standke have installed some temporary exhibition architecture in gallery 4. This presents their work, but at the same time - or perhaps even more importantly - redesigns the space at their disposal, or makes it possible to look at it in a different way. This too is a lucid statement: LOST Architekten are creating an exhibition within the Architekturmuseum's exhibition, and here the presentation of their work effaces itself in favour of the omnipresent room installation.