Cooking with colours
High-rise, Koch area B, Zurich
The competition programme, about 100 pages thick, meticulously defined the requirements for this high-rise residential building. As always, we looked for the gap and found it – inter alia – in the colours.
Inside, the three-storey social spaces obtain a unique identity – by strong colours! In contrast, the colouring of the facades is very restrained. Its delicate colour tones break the weight and mass of the high-rise, which now appears as an ordinary house whose refinement reveals itself to the observer only retroactively. This is love at second sight!
Raw sawed meets Pop Art
Two houses, Sägestrasse in Kreuzlingen, Germany
Three different access systems at one fell swoop: An open gallery, a staircase and a 'rue intérieure' (a street-like corridor). – How does the light get in? "Our skylights" exclusivley shed their sunlight on surfaces that we traditionally have painted in colour! Spiced with a lot of Roesch. And polychromy lures us forever.
Geistlich housing complex, Schlieren
A spacious entrance hall, accessible from the park and the street, characterizes the residential development. Two differently designed courtyards illuminate the four-metre-high hall. Ten staircases are grouped around this versatile space and provide access to more than 200 apartments. Each staircase is painted in a different – but similar – colour: an intensive colour scheme which provides each apartment entrance with its own individual address. From a Swiss perspective, this is uncommon and cheerful. That’s the way we want it.
Colours (almost) don’t cost anything - or "think pink!"
Binz111 – two residential buildings for students and staff of the University Hospital, Zurich
Cost pressures were omnipresent. Only by choosing an extremely rational design, reduction to the bare essentials and prefabrication were we able to meet the strict cost requirements. Nevertheless, we managed to build our "Goethe Staircase" and created an outdoor space that finally turned the non-place into a good place. Few, but carefully chosen colours support the spatial ideas and create a mood that does not really fit into the beige of Zurich.
A laudatory speech by Patrick Gmür for artist and friend Peter Roesch on the occasion of the presentation of the Lucerne Culture Prize on 19 October 2017
"Certainly a well-considered intention: The Cultural Award ceremony for Lucerne artist Peter Roesch is accompanied by a Bob Dylan song. "Buckets of Rain", a children's rhyme for adults, is performed by singer Pink Spider in a bewitchingly beautiful way. This piece of music fits perfectly, as if Bob Dylan had thought of today's ceremonial act when composing his song in 1974".
It's about space!
Conversion and extension of Scherr school building, Zurich
"Creature Comforts", a stop-motion film by Nick Park (creator of Wallace & Gromit), contains a humorous sequence. A Brazilian puma is interviewed – in a European zoo. "It's about space!" the puma speaks into the microphone, with a lovely accent.
This statement stands for the coloured interiors. Here we have pulled out all the stops of a colour and light direction. In this way, break halls and access areas can be experienced spatially. But the best thing is: they move people's minds. Important: Architecture should touch the soul.
Counterpoint: Restrained materialization & colours
Hard Turm Park residential building and office building, Zurich
The mineral materialization and the bright tonality mainly serve two purposes: on the one hand, the finely graded grey and white tones emphasize the plasticity of the characterful building. On the other hand, the sandblasted and polished concrete elements of the loggias refine the conventional materialization of the house and create a visual connection to the office building.
JAMES residential building and commercial development, Zurich
For eight years we have been intensively occupied with this superstructure. As planners with overall responsibility, we succeeded in achieving a creative dynamic between all those involved in the construction. The 18 Mexican colours that we selected together with our friend, the artist Peter Roesch, testify to the atmosphere at that time. More than that: These colours lend the three buildings, both inside and out, an identity that is still unique in Zurich today.
Wright meets Barragán
Hirschi apartment house, Adligenswil
Frank Lloyd Wright built wonderful and impressive prairie houses. Along with the work on the building sections and the sophisticated topography, they served as models for our design. But it's not just that. During the planning time, the client's oldest son got married to a Mexican woman. Reason for us to experiment with a Mexican colour palette from the 1950s, according to the motto: Wright meets Barragán!