The exhibition will be the first examining the work of the Swiss architectural practice in London for 20 years.

This Summer, the Royal Academy of Arts will present an exhibition examining the work of Herzog & de Meuron (H&dM) and how it has helped to shape the cities that we live in these days.

Founded in Basel in 1978 by Jacques Herzog and Pierre de Meuron, the architectural practice has helped to reimagine the nature of architecture and this display will be developed in close association with the architects to provide insight into the thinking and approaches applied to their projects. 

Among the notable projects the company has been involved with include: Tate Modern, London (2000 and 2016), Laban Dance Centre, London (2003), the National Stadium Beijing (Bird’s Nest) (2008), Elbphilharmonie Hamburg (2016), REHAB Basel (2002 and 2020), M+, Hong Kong (2021), the Royal College of Art, London (2022) and Kinderspital Zürich (to be completed in 2024).

The exhibition will be arranged in a sequence of three spaces that together explore the ideas and processes in the making and experience of architecture. The opening room will feature a part of H&dM’s Kabinett, an open storage and research space, from Basel to London. Tall timber shelves will show around 400 objects including a range of models, materials, prints, photographs and film clips, representing a diverse, yet specific, range of projects.

Meanwhile, the second room will be a film space. A large central screen will show a new film by renowned filmmakers Bêka & Lemoine, featuring daily life at H&dM’s project REHAB Clinic for Neurorehabilitation and Paraplegiology in Basel, Switzerland. On the other side of the screen will be a film installation based on observations of people occupying and exploring H&dM projects.

The third and final room will focus specifically on a single project which is currently under construction, the Kinderspital Zürich, Switzerland. The project won an international
competition in 2012, which called for a new facility with pioneering hospital architecture. The display will give visitors an insight into the work process and the questions H&dM asks itself when approaching the design of a healing space. The room will include a 1:1 interior mock-up of a section of a hospital patient room, illustrating H&dM’s humanising of hospital rooms and designs. Visitors will be able to explore the room at full scale using AR.

The exhibition is being organised by the Royal Academy of Arts, London, in collaboration with Herzog & de Meuron. It is curated by Vicky Richardson, Head of Architecture and Drue Heinz Curator, Royal Academy of Arts, in close collaboration with Herzog & de Meuron.

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