Vitra’s sprawling campus in Weil am Rhein is home to not only the Swiss furniture giant’s head office and design museum, but also boasts an impressive roster of iconic structures. Buildings have famously been provided by some of architecture's greats, such as Frank Gehry, Tadao Ando and Zaha Hadid to name but a few. The newest addition to this architectural hotspot is the Schaudepot by Herzog & de Meuron – their second contribution to the campus, and the new home of Vitra’s permanent collection.
Consisting of 7,000 pieces of furniture, the Vitra collection is a vast assemblage of works spanning generations, such as modernism by Le Corbusier, objects from the Pop era, Bentwood furniture, pieces by Charles and Ray Eames and even a series of contemporary additions created through the medium of 3d printing. A careful selection of more than 400 key pieces will furnish the Schaudepot space, accompanied by temporary exhibits, the first of which will be titled 'Radical Design, Movement Of The 1960s'. The adjacent main museum building, designed by Frank Gehry, will continue to exhibit large scale exhibitions, with the Vitra Design Museum Gallery showing smaller experimental projects.
Herzog & de Meuron's previous contribution to the campus was the VitraHaus, a building hosting a furniture showroom and designed to mimic the local housing vernacular, made from a series of stacked gabled blocks. The Schaudepot is also loosely led by the visual style of a residential property, similar in aesthetics to a large home, featuring red brick walls and the typical pitched roof.
Opening its doors on 3 June, once in operation the Schaudepot will be one of the world’s largest research and exhibition facilities in modern furniture design. The location will also provide its visitors with a shop and cafe to rest and reflect after browsing the collection.