Vitra Campus Adds A Viewing Tower With a Slide

Slide Tower / . Image © Vitra

Adding to the world-famous collection of buildings and structures at its campus in Weil am Rhein, Vitra has just unveiled its latest project, a viewing tower and slide designed by Carsten Höller. Located on the Alvaro Siza-designed promenade linking Herzog & de Meuron‘s Vitrahaus with Zaha Hadid‘s Fire Station, the new tower offers two ways to see the Vitra Campus as never before: from above, looking out over the other buildings at the tower’s viewing platform; and on the dizzying descent, as the transparent roof to the slide gives fleeting views of the buildings around you.

More on the Vitra Slide Tower after the break

Diogene / Renzo Piano

Photography by Julien Lanoo © Vitra

From the architect. Over the years, furniture company Vitra has made a name for itself as one of the most architecturally-enlightened companies in the world, with their renowned campus featuring buildings by Nicholas Grimshaw, Frank Gehry, Alvaro Siza, Tadao Ando, Zaha Hadid, Herzog & de Meuron and SANAA.

Now, Vitra has announced a collaboration with Renzo Piano that will bridge the gap between their sought-after furniture and their bespoke campus. Diogene, a self contained minimal living space with a floor area of just 2.5 x 3.0 meters, is billed as “Vitra’s smallest building – but largest product”.

More about the design of Diogene after the break

Factory Building on the Vitra Campus / SANAA

Photo by Christian Richters © Vitra

Architects: SANAA
Location: Vitra Campus, , Germany
Architectural Planning: Kazuyo Sejima & Ryue Nishizawa
Architectural Execution: Mayer Bährle Freie Architekten BDA, Lörrach, Germany; in partnership with nkbak, Frankfurt, Germany
Project Team: team: Takayuki Hasegawa, Marieke Kums (ex-staff); nkbak team: Nicole Kerstin Berganski, Andreas Krawczyk; Mayer Bährle Freie Architekten BDA
Area: 20455.0 sqm
Year: 2012
Photographs: Christian Richters, Julien Lanoo, Human Wu, Nicole Berganski, Courtesy of SANAA

‘Gerrit Rietveld – The Revolution of Space’ Exhibition

Red-Blue Chair, Gerrit Rietveld, 1918/1923 © VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2012, Photo: Andreas Sutterlin

Taking place now until September 16, 2012, the Vitra Design Museum is exhibiting “Gerrit Rietveld – The Revolution of Space”. The Dutchman Gerrit Rietveld (1888-1964) was one of the most important designers and architects of the 20th century. Today his work is primarily associated with his two most famous designs, which have become icons of modernism: the Red-Blue Chair (1918/1923) and the Rietveld-Schröder House (1924). But this exhibition shows that Rietveld’s oeuvre contains many more facets that deserve to be rediscovered. This is the first major retrospective on Gerrit Rietveld to be presented to the German-speaking public since 1996. Comprising around 320 objects – including furniture, models, paintings, photographs, films and approximately 100 original drawings and plans – it offers a comprehensive overview of the Dutch designer’s work. For more information on the exhibition, please visit here.

‘Album’ Exhibition / Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec

© studio Bouroullec

Presented at the Vitra Design Museum Gallery in Weil am Rhein, Germany, the ‘Album’ exhibition by Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec. The main focus of the exhibition is on their drawings, in addition to archive photographs of models and projects that all come together to offer a panorama of their work, extending from everyday details to a global approach. The exhibition was launched February 3rd and is up until June 3rd. More information after the break.

AD Classics: Vitra Design Museum and Factory / Frank Gehry

© Liao Yusheng

An independent private foundation, the Vitra Museum was founded in 1989 by the CEO Rolf Fehlbaum. Focusing mainly on furniture and interior design, the museum features work from Charles and Ray Eames, , Alvar Aalto, Verner Panton, Dieter Rams, Richard Hutten and Michael Thonet. The modern architecture which houses these collections was the first building of in Europe, and included the museum for Rolf Fehlbaum’s private collection, production hall, and gatehouse for the factory of Vitra.

More on the museum after the break.

 

Vitra Design Museum: George Nelson Installation

© Thomas Dix

In the year 2008, the American designer (1908-1986) would have celebrated his 100th birthday. To commemorate this occasion, the Vitra Design Museum exhibited the first comprehensive retrospective of his work. Nelson was one of the most influential figures in American design during the second half of the twentieth century. With an architectural degree from Yale, he was not only active in the fields of architecture and design, but was also a widely respected writer and publicist, lecturer, curator, and a passionate photographer. His office produced numerous furnishings and interior designs that became modern classics, including the Coconut Chair (1956), the Marshmallow Sofa (1956), the Ball Clock (1947) and the Bubble Lamps (1952 onwards). This same exhibition will be opened from October 29th, 2011 at the Bellevue Arts Museum in Seattle (until February 12th, 2012. More images and exhibition description after the break.

Vitra Design Museum: Antibodies. The Works of Fernando & Humberto Campana 1989-2009

© Thomas Dix

Vitra Design Museum recently presented the exhibition, titled Antibodies, which included the works of Fernando & Humberto Campana from 1989-2009. The Brazilian brothers have worked together as furniture designers in Sao Paulo since 1989. Humberto came to the partnership as a self-taught artist with a degree in law while Fernando had been trained as an architect. The first joint work of this unequal pair – brutalistic, surrealistic furniture sculptures – caused a sensation in the Sao Paulo art scene right from the start. Over the past twenty years, they have established themselves among the most well-known and successful designers of our times, implementing their distinctive and individual language of objects in a tremendously wide-ranging oeuvre of furniture, lighting and installations that has been recognized in numerous publications and exhibitions. More images and information after the break.

Vitra Design Museum: Rudolf Steiner – Alchemy of the Everyday Exhibition

© Rudolf Steiner Archiv

The exhibition “Rudolf Steiner – Alchemy of the Everyday” demonstrates that design is linked with many other topics of great relevance to society: from art and architecture, natural sciences and technology up to questions of ethics and spirituality. To this day, the practical implications of this broadly conceived understanding of design have an especially strong presence in the Basel region, which served as the centre of Steiner’s life and work over many years. The Vitra Design Museum embraced this local connection as an opportunity to develop an extensive supporting programme for the “Rudolf Steiner – Alchemy of the Everyday” exhibition. It offers a chance to retrace Steiner’s footsteps in the region, take a good look at his contributions, voice criticism and seek connections to the design and architecture of the present. More information on the event after the break.

AD Classics: Vitra Fire Station / Zaha Hadid

© Wojtek Gurak

After a devastating fire in 1981 that crippled the Vitra design campus in , , Vitra began an extensive mission to rebuild the campus as well as redesign the masterplan, which was designed by Nicholas Grimshaw. Almost a decade after the devastating fire in 1981, the company sought an architect to build a fire station for the Vitra campus to thwart any future reoccurrences and commissioned Zaha Hadid.  Completed in 1993, the Vitra fire station would be Hadid’s first realized project of her career, which would eventually launch her name and style to an international audience.

The Vitra fire station is Hadid’s showcased work that delves into the deconstructivist theoretical language that she developed through her paintings as a conceptual mediator of finding spatial relationships and form.  The Vitra fire station is a synthesis of philosophy and architecture that bridges the Vitra design campus to its surrounding context.

More on the Vitra Fire Station after the break.