2013 RIBA Royal Gold Medal Winner Peter Zumthor in conversation with RIBA’s Tony Chapman

Swiss architect Peter Zumthor, known for his exploration of tactile and sensory qualities of space and site-specific buildings, is arguably one of the most sought-after members of his profession. Unlike his peers, he is one of the few design practitioners who keeps a low profile, which is not surprising considering his wooden barn studio is tucked away in the little town of Haldenstein in the Swiss Alps.  His prominence has earned him the opportunity to pick and choose the commissions that come his way, and yet he remains quite soft-spoken while letting his ideas do the talking. The 72-year old son of a cabinet maker began his apprenticeship as a carpenter in 1958 and founded his own practice in 1979. It is widely known that he spends a considerable amount of time on each commission. His hard-edged, modernist buildings look as if they were built by hand, with a craftsmanship quality about them that grounds his buildings both figuratively and literally.



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