Building without models?
The Basle architect Peter Zumthor, who is by no means unknown in Cologne, can be said to have an at least ambivalent relationship to his architectural predecessors. In his own essays, building-descriptions and interviews he does not entirely deny the existence of prior models that have inspired his buildings, but on the other hand he tries very firmly to blur the traces of these earlier sources.
Taking five well known public buildings by Peter Zumthor (the Sogn Benedetg Chapel, Sumvitg, Grisons; the Kunsthaus Bregenz; the Therme Vals spa; the Kolumba Art Museum; and the Bruder Klaus chapel in the Eifel), the paper will highlight the apparent lack of prior models for the buildings of Peter Zumthor, and also some possible models for his works. The aim is to show how even this architect’s work cannot get by entirely without prior models.