The style of Peter Zumthor's work has some affinities with what is often called Swiss minimalism. Zumthor believes "the language of architecture is not a question of a specific style. Every building is built for a specific use in a specific place for a specific society. My buildings try to answer the questions that emerge from these simple facts as precisely and critically as they can."
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Text: English (translation)
Original Language: German
A year later in The New York Times, on January 7 of this year, Dian Ketchum's story, "Architecture's Swiss Mystic," further fanned the hype about this form cabinetmaker, whom she admitted "has barely a dozen buildings to his credit." With just a few commissions, Zumthor, the new superstar architect, has reinvented Modernism as minimalism derived from the Swiss vernacular combined with his own sense of translucent atmospherics. And he writes. In the introduction to Peter Zumthor Works: Buildings and Projects 1979-1997. Zumthor himself describes the origins of his sensibility-a near state of grace between tectonics and poetics that relies on ephemeral and often mysterious intuitive forces.
Works features 8 buildings and 12 projects, ranging from small rural houses (including Zumthor's own studio of 1985-86) to public architecture and provincial museums. Since 1978, like most architects, he has been entering design competitions-losing more than he wins. But his major commissions, like the Thermal Baths at Vals, all resulted from competitions. -- Oculus
Peter Zumthor is not yet a household name among architects, due to his minimal production and his reluctance to publish his work. With the completion of ahealth spa in Vals, Switzerland, and an art museum in Bregenz, Austria--extraordinary works that seem destined to represent the age--the Swiss architect's aloofness can no longer be maintained....Deceptively simple--cubes, oblongs, cylinders--the 54-year-old architect's buildings cannot be captured in photographs; their true essence comes from the experience of textures, the play of light, the celebration of craft, and the kinesthesia of their spaces....Each work goes to extremes to eliminate the superfluous, yielding the paradox of an architecture of pure materials and continuous space that is at once impossibly simple yet wrenchingly mysterious. -- Richard Ingersoll, Architecture, Oct 1997
The Swiss architect Peter Zumthor has over the last years completed a series of built works that have captivated us with their object simplicity and their material sophistication. More than anyone he has reinforced the physical power of architecture. Avoiding rhetorical gesture he has managed to complete a series of buildings that are joyful in their manifestation of form, material, and construction....While fashionable minimalism achieves its results by exclusion, Zumthor's work is informed by complex understanding and the working-through of problems....More than any other contemporary architect Peter Zumthor has persisted in maintaining architecture as a constructive craft. Through his built work he shows us how architecture can be invested with idea, how idea does not have to conspire with ideology. He demonstrates that through a multiple and layered process architecture can have intent without rhetoric, purpose without dogma, gravity and light. -- David Chipperfield, AA Files
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Book Description Princeton Architectural Press July 1999, 1999. Hardcover. Book Condition: Used - Good. There is a small circular hole in the cover fabric maybe a burn otherwise the book is in great condition. Binding is tight, book is free of any marks. Bookseller Inventory # 189601
Book Description Basel/Boston. Birkhäuser, 1999. 4°, black linen. 318 pages. Very good copy. Sprache: Englisch Gewicht in Gramm: 4000. Bookseller Inventory # 10678