We imagine landscapes and buildings which slightly confound, solemnly stand up to us, hold our attention and with intention create lasting value over a multitude of generations – both in an intellectual and in an extremely direct, basic, emotional sense. We believe this can be achieved through listening, and then a conscious balancing of at-first-glance apparent contradictions and jarring harmonies, levels of incompleteness, or overlapping fragments of not-so-obvious (even questionable) coherence – finally resulting in places of endearing, novel and meaningful relationships.
Fire Pavilion, Yangshuo, Guilin, CN, 2023–ongoing; 70 m²; Direct Commission; Architecture: Atelier Amont; Structure: Neven Kostic, Collaborator(s): Melina Almpani, Dawid Roszkowski; Client: Private (Yangshuo Sugar-House Hotel)
A pavilion is to be built in October to celebrate the coming new year. It is based on the idea of separation between a raised, other-worldy fire, and a lower, useful fire. People can gather around the lower fire for the months before the main event. In the end, the upper bundle of long bamboo poles will be set ablaze, in a contemporary ritual.
Courtyard for Cultural Events, Schaffhausen, CH, 2021; 9,350 m², Competition; Landscape + Architecture: Atelier Amont; Collaborator(s): Luigi Fabozzi, Paolo Failla; Structure: wh-p Ingenieure AG (Lars Keim), Basel; Traffic Planning: moveIng AG, Basel
The design for the Kammgarnhof creates a socially dynamic, multi-layered and ecologically rich complex for the surrounding urban environment of Schaffhausen. It is a place offering a range of activities for all age groups, but the boundaries of such are not clear – effectively overlapped to encourage an exchange between individuals. Its goal is to offer a festive, playful atmosphere, complementing and reinforcing the qualities of other public spaces of Schaffhausen such as the grandiose Herrenacker Platz, the contemplative Kloster Allerheiligen, or the park-like character of the Mosergarten.
Fountain in a Garden, Former Setouchi Governor’s Residence, Setouchi, JP, 2010–11; 35 m²; Landscape: Atelier Amont & Yoshinobu Aiba; Client: Private (Direct Commission)
A fountain in Naoshima is constructed of river stones from Kyoto, where we were based and could be transported in a single load – chosen for their shape, size, and surface; and as well, in turn – the specificity of their curves influence the overall character of the intervention. The reaction to water is always present, as the stones are both above and under water – fish also sometimes splash drops onto higher dry areas. Water is held both below and above ground. Finishing mortar is dyed with calligraphy ink to create a homogeneous body.
Garden, Riehen, Basel, CH, 2018; 2,200 m²; Study; Landscape: Atelier Amont; Client: Private
A transformation of a garden around an existing villa from the 1930s. The proposal contains two disparate realms, but developed with regard to each other, forming a meaningful unity. An upper portion is light-filled and enjoyed from a pavilion at the top of a slope, where the clients spend time dining with family or guests while looking down on shrubs pruned in cloud-like formations rising as the topography descends. The lower portion is at the bottom of the same slope, under the respective shrubs which gradually become higher at the back of the plot – creating a hidden, dark, shady world for walking alone or seeking introspection seated next to a quiet pool of water. One unique garden, like a body, offers the potential to satisfy desires for both convivial enjoyment and solitude.
Publication, Das Haus im Buch, 100 Bücher von Menschen, die Architektur lieben
Das Haus im Buch: 100 Bücher von Menschen, die Architektur lieben, Herausgegeben von Ana Vollenbroich, Annelen Schmidt-Vollenbroich, Oliver Jahn; Park Books, Zürich, 2023
100 Persönlichkeiten zeigen ihr liebstes Architekturbuch und schreiben, warum sie immer wieder zu diesem Buch greifen. Die Nidus Architekturgalerie und der langjährige AD-Chefredakteur Oliver Jahn haben 100 Architektinnen, Designer, Künstlerinnen, Kulturschaffende und andere Prominente gebeten, dasjenige Buch in die Galerie zu schicken, das mit Architektur zu tun hat und das sie im Leben stets von Neuem zur Hand nehmen. Herausgekommen ist eine höchst vergnügliche und informative Hommage an das architekturbezogene Buch, mit vielen Trouvaillen, überraschenden Beispielen – und spannenden Einblicken ins Denken der angefragten Menschen. Im Band zu sehen ist je eine Fotografie des persönlichen Exemplars jedes eingereichten Buchs und der dazugehörige persönliche Text.
Farmers' House, Lu Sulianu, Sassari, Sardinia, IT, 2022; 130 m²; Architecture + Landscape: Atelier Amont; Collaborator(s): Dawid Roszkowski, Nikki Sedigh; Client: Private
A new house is planned on the same natural-stone foundations as a ruined stable (of which the granite and ceramic tiles are re-used for new retaining walls and paving). The upper layer of the roof is completely covered by a pergola entwined with lush Vitis. This provides a generous, otherworldly space for contemplation and strolling (similar as at the philosopher's path in Kyoto) in the mornings and evenings; while the shade generated by dense leaves passively cools the house throughout the day. The grapes, once harvested from the vines, offer both sustenance and pleasure for the bovine and human inhabitants of the farm.
'Two Projects Using Stone'
Lecture 31.03.2022, 12:15, S2 HSLU Technik & Architektur, Technikumstrasse 21, 6048 Horw Building IV, Niche F-Level
1) A fountain in Naoshima is built of river stones from Kyoto – chosen for their shape, size, and surface qualities; and as well, in turn – the specificity of their curves influence the overall character of the intervention. (Fountain in a Garden, Former Setouchi Governor’s Residence, Naoshima, Japan, 2010–11; in collaboration with Yoshinobu Aiba, Gardener)
2) A walled garden for production towards the summit of Monte Generoso visually forms a plinth for an impressive country house – neither a purely aristocratic type nor a peasant’s home without an overriding order. Our project, for the garden and respective massive walls, takes this history into account, regarding its detailed mode of construction. (Walled Garden, Former Country Residence of Arch. Simone Cantoni, Pianspessa, Ticino, Switzerland, ca. 2022–23; in collaboration with Roi Carrera, Architect & Roberto Guidotti, Engineer)
Campus, Bernex, Geneva, CH, 2020; 42,600 m², Competition; Landscape: Atelier Amont; Architecture: Atelier Amont & Gaëtan Iannone; Collaborator(s): Marc Sanchez Alfonso; Structure: Mitsuhiro Kanada, ARUP, Tokyo; Traffic Planning: CSD Engineers, Lausanne
Bernex, a village at the outer-edge of Geneva, requested a campus on a site bound by a highway access ramp which excluded the possibility of building near it, thereby limiting the usable area, and as well created significant noise pollution. On the other side of the ramp an urban agricultural park is currently being planned. We proposed to turn the disadvantage into a quality by placing a continuous cap over the ramp, and then constructing, out of timber, the main classroom building overhead. Columns and minimal cores on the ground floor allow porosity – connecting the campus with the adjacent, agricultural fields. The campus in turn becomes a generous park in itself, with small pavilions containing facilities shared with the public – a sports halls, cafeteria, library and performing arts hall. A vision; a huge intervention – seemingly brutal, yet due to its existence, offers to society a serene, collective space.
Urban Housing, Baufeld 5, Voltanord, Basel, CH, 2021; 14,500 m², Competition; Architecture + Landscape: Atelier Amont & Marco Salina; Collaborator(s): Chen He
A series of slender, parallel volumes are linked together at lower levels by hedges and high, floating screens of pleached trees, leading to an ambiguity in urbanistic reading. The complex thereby forms a block, yet is also a repetition of singular bars – leading to improved sunlight and ventilation for all flats. As opposed to built mass, plant-life stands in to fulfil the spatial definition society requests, but is subversive to a degree, remaining porous at ground level.
Housing Quarter, Salzweg, Zürich, CH, 2020; 21,500 m², Competition; Landscape: Atelier Amont; Architecture: Atelier Amont & Gaëtan Iannone; Collaborator(s): Marc Sanchez Alfonso
At the edge of the city, along the street, a large area is left unbuilt as an offer – a public park. The meandering, stepped-back bar clearly marks the border between the urban fabric and the agricultural fields before a forest, and is so articulated as to offer generous spatial qualities to both residents and to all inhabitants within the surrounding city. The garden-park is composed of medium to large trees with high, floating crowns, and casually terraced platforms to provide flat areas for a variety of uses.
Gerresheim Cemetery, Düsseldorf, DE, 2022; 29,000 m²; Workshop Lead: Logan Amont; Participants: Sibel Besir, Darcy Carroll, Shauneen Cavanagh, Christoph Grüter, Chen He, Matthew Lindsay, Francesca Masserdotti, Edoardo Reverberi, Giovanni Rinaldi, Dawid Roszkowski, Nikki Sedigh, Wilusty Tengara, Zhouyi Tu, & Meng Wang; Guests: Emilie Appercé, Matthew Bailey, Marianne Meister, Ioannis Piertzovanis, Joseph Redpath, Anna Staudt, Heinrich Toews, & Liviu Vasiu
Over a period of eight days in February 2022, we met for a workshop to discuss and reconsider basic aspects of cemeteries for the present. Participants were assigned fragments to concentrate on – in some cases in relation to other colleagues’ proposals – and to develop their ideas through models. On the suggestion of Anna Staudt, a stonemason who is engaged in national seminars on the topic, we used, loosely, the Gerresheim Cemetery in Düsseldorf as a basis for our speculations.
Download a PDF documentation of the final works of the participants.
Workshop, On Cemeteries
In February, we will gather to think about cemeteries; abstractly, and practically – in relation to the contemporary situation in Germany. With guests Emilie Appercé, Matthew Bailey, Marianne Meister, Ioannis Piertzovanis, Joseph Redpath, Anna Staudt, Heinrich Toews, & Liviu Vasiu.
For interest, please read the brief.
Many thanks to all the participants, from China, Indonesia, Iran, Italy, Poland, Romania, Switzerland & UK: Sibel Besir, Darcy Carroll, Shauneen Cavanagh, Christoph Grüter, Chen He, Matthew Lindsay, Francesca Masserdotti, Edoardo Reverberi, Giovanni Rinaldi, Dawid Roszkowski, Nikki Sedigh, Wilusty Tengara, Zhouyi Tu & Meng Wang.
Restaurant, Li Puzzi, Sassari, Sardinia, IT, 2022; 140 m²; Architecture + Landscape: Atelier Amont; Collaborator(s): Dawid Roszkowski, Dominika Wasik; Client: Private
Opaque roofs and shading screens float, without an obvious order, offering protection and informal places for sitting, dining and merriment. The density, arrangement and differing heights of roof planes produces a variety of space and gradients of intimacy (A Pattern Language), to suit the mood and/or personality of each guest. (i.e. are you looking for a party, or would you prefer to be off to the side in the shadows ...?)
A publication on Kasuien, 1958–60, the annex to the Miyako Hotel in Kyoto, designed by Togo Murano, is in preparation ...
Rio Is Cungiaus
Urban Park, Quartucciu, Cagliari, Sardinia, IT, 2021; 32,400 m²; Competition; Architecture + Landscape: Atelier Amont, Stefano Dell‘Oro & Pierre Minio Paluello
The project consists of redefining and reconnecting various urban voids adjacent to the passage of a stream, creating a park with its own strength and identity. Nature becomes the founding and central event in the project to create a unique quality commonly perceived from all sides. A single architectural element, a pergola, unites and accompanies visitors on their journey, linking them in an ongoing dialogue with the land and its flora. One and the same element determines many aspects: pedestrian and cycle paths, bridges, playgrounds, sports & exercise areas.
Urban Park & Nature Preserve, Quartier Volta Nord, Basel, CH, 2021; 22,200 m²; Competition; Landscape: Atelier Amont; Collaborator(s): Chiara Filippini
Along a thin plot, public "rooms" of various character of fauna and flora, humid/dry, are linked one after another with a threshold strip of a hilly nature preserve allocated adjacent to the railway lines. The project, emphatically, avoids romanticising historical attributes such as the lines of rails which until recently covered part of the site, but rather orients itself towards resolving the problems presented, while positing a place of joy for the future.
Alterations to a Historic Public Garden, Klosterinsel, Rheinau, Zürich Canton, CH, 2021; 10,800 m²; Competition; Architecture + Landscape: Atelier Amont; Collaborator(s): Chen He
Seminar, What do we focus on now?
Invited to a seminar to present and discuss the contemporary focus and concerns of young European practices. Organized by Vector Architects (introduction) & Team Shichai (moderation). Participants included: 刘东洋 Dongyang Liu, 李兴钢 Xinggang Li, 董功 Gong Dong, 柳亦春 Yichun Liu, 张斌 Bin Zhang, 丁垚 Yao Ding, 冯江 Feng Jiang, 郭廖辉 Liaohui Guo, & others
Courtyard Garden, Hotel, Todos Santos, La Paz, Baja California Sur, MX, 2019; 12,650 m²; Invited Competition; Landscape: Atelier Amont
Lecture, Montagsreihe, TUM
Die Vortragsreihe »N E U B A U T E N« der Fakultät für Architektur an der TU München bringt Studenten und Architekturinteressierten zehn junge aufstrebende Architekturbüros aus unterschiedlichsten Teilen Europas näher und setzt sich mit ihren Ideen und Arbeiten auseinander.
Summer Pavilion, Hasselt, Limburg, BE, 2013–2014; 85 m²; Open International Competition, 1st Prize; Architecture: Atelier Amont; Collaborator(s): Liaohui Guo (Project Architect), James Jamison, Taiko Amont; Client: z33 House for Contemporary Art; Textile: Kvadrat; Furniture: Elmar Heimbach, Aachen; Structure: Robrecht Keersmaekers, Brussels
… We need something to symbolise our lives. In a world in which everything has turned into interchangeable parts, a person wants to cry out, 'Yes, here I am!', and so proclaim that we live in the space between life and death. (Yoshizaka Takamasa, 1967)