Architonic Newsletter 11.2013

Dear Readers

The November issue of the Architonic Newsletter examines the tension between tradition and innovation, with a particular look at Switzerland. And for good reason: in just over a week, the interiors fair 'neue räume' opens its doors for the seventh time in our hometown of Zurich. Detailed information can be found in our Special Newsletter. Our team is very much looking forward to welcoming you to the Architonic Concept Space IV at the fair.

Here's what you'll find in our October Newsletter:

  • Agenda December 2013 - January 2014
  • Architonic at neue räume 13
  • Beyond the Cliché: the mountain chalet reinterpreted
  • The Shapeshifter: material innovation FluidSolids
  • Inspiring Search Results N° 23: Table lamps in wood
  • Inspiring Spaces N° 15: Terraces
  • Swiss Architects on Architonic
  • Architecture and Design Projects on Architonic


Get inspired!

Your Architonic Team

Zurich | Milan | Barcelona | Berlin | Cologne | Copenhagen | Stockholm | London | New York


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Architect Pascal Flammer reinterpreted the region's construction style for this house in Balsthal, Switzerland, made of fir wood. Extensive glazing provides a continuous visual flow between inside and out; photo Ioana Marinescu

Agenda December 2013 - January 2014


Architonic Anniversary Disco, Zurich CH
27 November 2013

neue räume 2013, Zurich CH
27 November - 1 December 2013

Istanbul Design Week, TR
27 November - 1 December 2013

ArchitectsParty 2013 by TOWANT, Trento IT
2 - 6 December 2013

Design Miami 2013, Miami US
4 - 8 December 2013

Heimtextil 2014, Frankfurt DE
8 - 11 January 2014

Design Trade 2014, Copenhagen DK
8 - 10 January 2014

Domotex 2014, Hannover DE
11 - 14 January 2014

imm cologne 2014, Cologne DE
13 – 19 January 2014

Passagen 2014, Cologne DE
14 - 20 January 2014

Design Lighting 2014, Tokyo JP
15 - 17 January 2014

Interiors UK, Birmingham UK
19 - 22 January 2014

Swissbau 2014, Basel CH
21 - 25 January 2014

Maison et Objet 2014, Paris FR
24 - 28 January 2014

The show for all creative energies

- 3,000 exhibitors including 45% international brands
- More than 130,000 m² (net) of stand space
- 85,000 visitors, including 50% from outside France

A leading event in home styles, MAISON&OBJET offers an international, 360° panorama of the market. Decorative items, furniture, accessories, textiles, fragrances, children's world, tableware, etc.

This lifestyle platform merging business and creativity is THE meeting place for buyers and specifiers the world over. A facilitator of encounters, business booster and strategy scout all rolled into one, this must-see trade exhibition draws its inspiration from Paris.
Luxury, know-how, design, avant-garde…

MAISON&OBJET and the City of Lights: a unique DNA!


Architonic at neue räume 13


This year, Architonic will once again be located inside the entrance to neue räume, this time with its Concept Space IV by Zurich designer Beat Karrer. We look forward to seeing you there and to showing you our latest developments. To coincide with neue räume 13, we'll be presenting the new 'Best Swiss Design Brands' app, which will be free to download from the start of the fair.

You're warmly invited to help us celebrate the grand finale of our tenth anniversary year! The legendary Hive Club will be opening its doors on 27 November at 9pm for Architonic's anniversary disco, with DJ Animal Trainer (Hive Audio, Zurich) and our special tonic-water sponsor Gents.

If you're not on the guest list yet, you're welcome to register for the Architonic Disco via Facebook!


The new "Best Swiss Design Brands" app will be available for free with the opening of neue räume 13


Beyond the Cliché: the mountain chalet reinterpreted

The mountain chalet has always been closely linked with the dream of a simple, rustic home in pristine natural surroundings. However, a number of projects throughout the world show that a holiday home in the mountains does not necessarily need to conform to the romantic picture of 'Gemütlichkeit' and accordingly to an outdated stereotype of the log cabin with a projecting pitched roof. 


DRN Architects' Chalet C7 is located 3,000 metres above sea level in the Chilean Andes and merges discreetly into its surroundings; photo Felipe Camus

The word 'chalet' originally came from Romandy, the French-speaking region of Switzerland, and means something like 'protected location'. In fact, on the drawing board, it was the Alpine huts that cowherds used as a temporary shelter during the summer months that provided the model for this type of construction.

The spread of these log-built dwellings throughout the Alps and, from there, right round the world took place parallel to the development of Alpine tourism in the 19th century, during which the 'Swiss house' came to represent authenticity and a rural idyll. It quickly developed from a refuge for early winter sport enthusiasts into the archetypal holiday home.

Marte.Marte Architekten's holiday home in Laternsertal, Austria, is far removed from the chalet cliché. The concrete construction does, however, speak of the traditional notion of protection; photo Marc Lins Photography

However, the industrial prefabrication of individual sections and conservative building regulations subsequently led to an increasing uniformity of style. And with the construction of 'jumbo chalets' in popular holiday resorts, the log-built dwelling lost any connection with its modest predecessor and justifiably came to be regarded as kitsch.


The Shapeshifter: material innovation FluidSolids

Nominated for this year's Design Prize Switzerland, Zurich-based designer Beat Karrer's material innovation FluidSolids, with its strong ecological credentials and impressive programmability, is poised to give traditional materials like metal and plastic a run for their money. The future is fluid.


FluidSolids serves to create architectural space in the form of Architonic's Concept Space IV 

Every now and then a design innovation comes along that has the potential to be a complete game-changer. One of the nominations for the 2013 Design Prize Switzerland – a long-established and well-respected accolade in a country where good design is part of the DNA of everyday life – is such an innovation.


Swiss designer Beat Karrer's 'FS Stool', which puts his innovative FluidSolids material to the test, was awarded a 2011 Materialica Design + Technology Award in the CO2 Efficiency category

The brainchild of Zurich-based product designer Beat Karrer (or ‘product thinker’ as he elects to describe himself, thereby underscoring the problem-solving smarts he brings to bear on his work), FluidSolids is an entirely new, paradigm-shifting material. Beyond its impressive ecological credentials – it’s made entirely of industrial by-products and is fully biodegradable – it offers, as its name would suggest, enormous flexibility in production and application terms. The wonder stuff, which consists of fibre, a filling material and a binding agent, can be moulded and extruded into highly precise structural components and products that, both lightweight and durable, replace the need for metal or plastic. ‘As a designer,’ says Karrer, ‘the idea of having a material that can be adapted with regard to strengths and physical properties, colours and appearance – it’s kind of a dream.’ This is a design development with the ability to change how we design.

Inspiring Search Results N° 23


Table lamps in wood

Inspiring Spaces N° 15



Swiss Architects on Architonic


Architecture and Design Projects on Architonic


Pascal Flammer Architects

Stöckli in Balsthal | Jura | Switzerland | Completed 2013

Earnest Studio

Building | Netherlands | 2012

Halfmann Mennickheim Design

Raster | Germany | 2013

Copyright © 2013 Architonic AG, All rights reserved.

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