July 3, 2007

Sumvitg, Flims, Appenzell (Switzerland)



A winding steep road led us to Caplutta Sogn Benedetg, a small chapel by Peter Zumthor set high in the mountains, overlooking picturesque Swiss valleys below. The chapel is a wood shingle clad oval-shaped cylinder that rises to a keel-shaped roof form. The building felt taller than it was, emphasized by the steep slope of the mountains and enhanced on the interior by a series of thin wood pillars that encircle the walls of the space, light peering in from a narrow band of windows above. The quality of detailing is sustained throughout. We were taken by the beauty of this chapel in this context, and allured by its form that was not quite definable.

On the drive back from Vals we stopped in Flims to see Valerio Olgiati's
Das Gelbe Haus [The Yellow House]. The museum was actually white, a converted greengrocers/house with the plaster knocked-off, revealing layers of the old stone walls which were reworked with a hammer. This gave an archaic feel, with strong shadows and textural character. We arrived in-between the two seasonal exhibits so the space was empty.. which we didn't mind at all!

A rainy drive brought us to the quaint town of Appenzell, and the
Liner Museum by Annette Gigon / Mike Guyer. Dedicated to the painters Carl August and Carl Walter Liner, the museum is a series of ten simple gallery spaces flanked by a spacious lobby at the entry end and a small reading room adjacent to a slide room at the north end. Poured concrete floors and natural light illumination throughout, the latter coming in through windows set in the gabled roof overhead.

The entire building is wrapped in sheets of sandblasted chrome steel. The gray color and overlapping cladding calls reference to the weathered shingle facades in traditional Appenzell architecture. The characteristic zig-zag shape of the museum also recalled the sawtoothed roofs of industrial and agricultural architecture in the region.

2 comments:

  1. gruezzi!

    i don't know if you caught this:

    @ kunsthaus winterthur, each of the rooms has a subtly different color from the sawtooth lenses. it's only recognizable when you are in one spot and can see into 3 different galleries.

    was the liner the same?

    looks like you're still having fun.

    what'd you hit in the bregenz area? did you go to those places i rec'd for ya? i wanna see some rammed earth, yo.

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  2. did not notice that... i've combed through all the photos we took and cannot differentiate any color variations. the liner seemed to have consistent diffused light in each gallery.

    we didn't hit as much in Bregenz as we had hoped... 1 day wasn't enough. did find some rammed earth in Berlin at the Chapel of Reconciliation...

    we're still living it up, though the hostel breakfasts are starting to all taste the same.

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