Christ & Gantenbein

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Swiss Reformation Pavilion . Wittenberg

Christ & Gantenbein . Swiss Reformation Pavilion . Wittenberg (1)

Christ & Gantenbein . photos: © Stefano Graziani . + dezeen


The pavilion celebrates the history of Swiss Protestantism on the occasion of the World Reformation Exhibition taking place in Wittenberg (DE) in 2017 to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. Built on an elongated and verdant plot in the Luthergarten city park, the pavilion is divided into four spaces: each one is dedicated to a different aspect of the cultural history of the Reformation in Switzerland, focusing on its main protagonists as well as its symbols such as the Gutenberg press. At the pavilion, the New Testament of the latest edition of the Zurich Bible (2007) are being printed each day using the printing techniques from the Reformation era, 500 years ago.

The light construction is painted white, it features a pitched roof supported by a regularly interrupted perimeter of thin wooden beams. The pavilions has no outer walls, a heavy coated fabric spanning the spaces through the pillars offers protection from the elements to
the inner enclosures. The green colour of the cloth blends the building within the vegetation around it. The very simple structure reflects on the primary dwelling: a trivial shelter, which mediates between “homeness” and holiness, while suggesting a place of production like a factory, or a sawmill.

Client: Schweizerische Evangelische Kirchenbund – SEK
Programme: Temporary Exhibition Pavilion Location: Wittenberg, Germany Architecture: Christ & Gantenbein, Basel
Architecture Team: Emanuel Christ, Christoph Gantenbein; Victoria Easton, Jan Zachmann, Emilia Ionici.
Scenography: Christ & Gantenbein, Fjolla Rizvanolli Construction: Jens Graube (Fairnet), Andreas Uhlig (Interior) Curator: Gabriel de Montmollin, Geneva
Artistic direction : Juri Steiner, Lausanne
Graphic Design: Julien Notter, Lausanne (Exhibition), Marie Lusa, Zurich (Key visual)
Concept and realisation of the printing press: Pierre-Yves Schenker, Yverdon-les-Bains

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