Ziegelhof Brauerei - a second life - Ziegelhof Brauerei - a second life -

Areal view of the Ziegelhof Areal (© Lucas Darbellay)

          Second life

The programmatic title of our studio associates two things. Because the studio is dedicated to the re-use of buildings, it is obvious that by ‚Second Life‘ we mean, on the one hand, the re-use of hardware. Hardware that would otherwise be discarded, because a building or a production facility is taken out of service, because new requirements demand better performance - computers - or because the power gradually decreases - batteries - but there is still a lot of potential life left.
On the other hand, ‚Second Life‘ also describes a digital parallel world as an idealising alternative to disdainful reality. The human need for illusion is turned into a game. Those who do not succeed in self-optimisation in the analogue, physical world - that is, the vast majority of people - have the opportunity in the commercial metaverse of ‚Second Life‘ to create a better, more attractive image of themselves and to interact with other self-optimised avatars.

          Bird‘s eye view and frog‘s perspective

These two diametrically opposed aspects span two poles, as it were, between which the architectural design process moves: while the reuse of used but still usable substance looks at things from very close up and takes them in hand, we turn the magnifying glass around, as it were, when we develop alternative scenarios, visions, utopias for concrete places. We look through the wide-angle lens instead of the magnifying glass, seek the bird‘s eye view instead of the eye level.

          Utopias for concrete places

So we are looking for nothing less than visions that resonate with utopian potential, the promise of a better future - and this for real, existing places. We do not want to develop these visions by ignoring or smashing real conditions, but within these conditions and out of them. That is a high, not always redeemable claim. 
We are convinced that it is precisely from the friction on the conditions that the productive heat and the flights of sparks arise, which are what give rise to architecture in the first place. In this sense, resistances are not obstacles but catalysts. The confrontation with the existing buildings proves to be a particularly productive resistance.

On-site work

selected propositions

David Baumgartner
„[...] the Ziegelhof Areal becomes a natural part of the urban fabric. Thereby the old backyard is turned inside-out, creating a courtyard with a public passage. The new and the old are interconnecting and are creating a new entity. From outside the building complex appears as a collage of independent objects. In the inside however it becomes one spatial organism whose divisions are concealed [...]“

Sibel Besir & Henri Baudet
“[...] Fractures are like fibres through which continuity takes place. Ziegelhof’s fractures are currently curated by in-situ, but thinking forward, more decisions must integrate future generations. We choose to address their reality, embracing the inevitability of change.

By resonance, landscapes of our perception and of built fabric change altogether where old structures sit alongside new structures. Their friction, created by use, crystalizes each detail – a step, a shelf, a door handle. [...]”

Maribel Buccelloni & Valentin Sanchez
„[...] Due to its central location, the silo functions as the main distribution point. Thus, it connects the upper and lower city as well as the different programmes of the site. The object is a light metal structure that is a parasite intruding into the existing structure. By leaning against the walls in some places and even absorbing them in others, the silo layers and alters the existing facades. These take on the aesthetic and material language of the silo, blending the intervention with the existing structure [...]“

Gloria Bassotti & Justin Rellstab

“[...] The old town of Liestal is structured by parallel alleys. This simple and robust morphology is extended beyond the edge of the old town into the Ziegelhof area by adding new alleys to the old ones. Each alley has a very specific identity: at the top the existing Zeughausgasse, below it a secluded, intimate residential alley, still further down Meyer-Wiggli-Strasse, reinterpreted as ‘Alley of Ateliers’, and finally the ‘Alley of Courtyards’ linking the existing backyards[...]”

...see all the projects in this year's Workbook!