On the trail: Tobias Rehberger devises a ’24 Stops’ cross-border walk

Garden
The ’24 Stops’ Rehberger-Weg is a 5km route punctuated by works by German artist Tobias Rehberger, developed over the past year and unveiled during Art Basel
(Image credit: Antonio Camera)

A collaboration between Vitra, Fondation Beyeler and the municipalities of Weil am Rhein and Riehen, Rehberger-Weg is a 5km walk punctuated by works by German artist Tobias Rehberger, developed over the past year and unveiled during Art Basel.

From Switzerland to Germany, the '24 Stops' walk connects the two countries and cultural institutions, taking visitors through country roads, across a river and along vineyards, pastures and fields.

Rehberger was commissioned to create 24 signposts along the way, and his approach was to reimagine the outdoors and public furniture vernacular, giving new shapes and colours to traditional objects such as trash cans, bird houses, street lamps and even trees. The artist has simplified shapes, making them bi-dimensional and bold, dotting the natural landscape with almost cartoon-like objects that attract attention and offer a new point of view on the walk.

Swiss and German identity, and the concept of crossing borders, are at the heart of the artist’s work on the project, which was created within the framework of IBA Basel 2020, an initiative that aims at strengthening the connections between Germany, Switzerland and France in the border region.

The project comes with the support of Swiss watch manufacturer Swatch, who have set up shop at the Cuckoolus, a checkpoint also designed by Rehberger and placed at the border. Visitors stopping by will be able to buy the limited-edition conceptual watch created in collaboration between Swatch and Rehberger, with arms of equal sizes that defy traditional time-reading. 

Map board

A collaboration between Vitra, Fondation Beyeler and the municipalities of Weil am Rhein and Riehen, the walk connects Switzerland and Germany, their landscapes and cultural institutions

(Image credit: Antonio Camera)

street lamp

Rehberger was commissioned to create 24 signposts along the way, and his approach was to reimagine the outdoors and public furniture vernacular, giving new shapes and colours to traditional objects such as trash cans, bird houses, street lamps and even trees

(Image credit: Antonio Camera)

Bell

The first object is ’Bell’, which sounds when the one-hour walk culminates or changes direction

(Image credit: Antonio Camera)

birdcages

Second are these ruined birdcages, their bars bent and their occupants departed. They’re located between the old coach houses of the Villa Berower estate where the Fondation Beyeler is located

(Image credit: Antonio Camera)

Waterspout

The third, ’Waterspout’ is constructed to resemble an abstract blossom

(Image credit: Antonio Camera)

two spheres sit in loudspeaker

’Weather House’ is a barometer – two spheres sit in loudspeaker-like apertures, each protruding according to low or high pressure (standing for rain and sun)

(Image credit: Antonio Camera)

Cuckoo Clock

Object nine is a ’Cuckoo Clock’ – the bird replaced by an orange pipe that emerges once an hour

(Image credit: Antonio Camera)

Road and house

Object 11 is the second of two ground-based murals

(Image credit: Antonio Camera)

idiomatic shapes applied to the side of a garage

A little further on, object 13 is a wall painting of lurid, idiomatic shapes applied to the side of a garage

(Image credit: Antonio Camera)

abstract birdhouse

By object 23, the Vitra campus is in sight. The installation comprises five abstract birdhouses...

(Image credit: Antonio Camera)

coloured bird houses

Each vividly coloured bird houses contains a nesting box of wood concrete

(Image credit: Antonio Camera)

Swiss watch manufacturer Swatch

The project comes with the support of Swiss watch manufacturer Swatch, who have set up shop at the Cuckoolus [pictured], a checkpoint also designed by Rehberger and placed at the border. A limited-edition conceptual watch is available for purchase

(Image credit: Antonio Camera)

second Bell

A second Bell, object 24, ends the one-hour walk, or, as Rehberger points out, starts it in the other direction

(Image credit: Antonio Camera)

INFORMATION

For more information, visit the ’24 Stops’ website (opens in new tab)

Photography: Antonio Camera

Rosa Bertoli was born in Udine, Italy, and now lives in London. Since 2014, she has been the Design Editor of Wallpaper*, where she oversees design content for the print and online editions, as well as special editorial projects. Through her role at Wallpaper*, she has written extensively about all areas of design. Rosa has been speaker and moderator for various design talks and conferences including London Craft Week, Maison & Objet, The Italian Cultural Institute (London), Clippings, Zaha Hadid Design, Kartell and Frieze Art Fair. Rosa has been on judging panels for the Chart Architecture Award, the Dutch Design Awards and the DesignGuild Marks. She has written for numerous English and Italian language publications, and worked as a content and communication consultant for fashion and design brands.