Das Gelbe Haus, Switzerland, Building – Yellow House

Das Gelbe Haus, Swiss Architecture, Building, Valerio Olgiati, Architect, Photos

Grisons Architecture : Contemporary Swiss Building

The Yellow House : Contemporary Swiss Building – design by Valerio Olgiati

1 Nov 2007

Das Gelbe Haus

Flims, Grisons, Switzerland

Das Gelbe Haus Gelbe Haus The Yellow House Yellow House
photos © Archive Olgiati

The Yellow House

This house, unoccupied for twenty years, became popularly known as ‘the yellow house’ when it was refinished and painted yellow prior to its renovation. Originally a dwelling house owned by the Parish of Flims, in accordance with an agreement between the Parish and my father Rudolf, himself an architect, it had been supposed to be renovated in keeping with his own architectural precepts. Amongst other things, he stipulated that the house should be painted white and the roof should be finished with stone slabs.

After my father’s death the Parish decided to turn it into an exhibition space. Since the intricate internal structure of the dwelling house was not suitable for the new purpose, we had to take rigorous action. The building was completely gutted; the interior was rebuilt in solid wood, the old external plaster-work was removed to reveal the natural stone walls, the roof was removed and replaced with randomly shaped stone slabs. Windows and openings that were no longer needed were filled in; others were fitted with new concrete reveals cast in situ. Finally the new interior wood structure, the existing external stone walls and the new slab-stone roof were all painted white.

The final coat of white, the finest of lime-washes, forms the outermost skin of the building. It conceals anything left unfinished. At the same time it points to a certain contradiction. The white lime-wash seems to turn the childlike archaism and animal substance of this structure into an abstract thought – which for its part gives the house itself the appearance of a ‘vision’.

[Text: Valerio Olgiati]

Grisons house Das Gelbe Haus Grisons
photographs © Archive Olgiati

Das Gelbe Haus Switzerland information from Valerio Olgiati 1 Nov 2007

More projects by Valerio Olgiati online soon

The Yellow House copyright pictures : archiv olgiati

Das Gelbe Haus Switzerland architect : Valerio Olgiati


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Das Gelbe Haus