What's new in Switzerland ?

I have been living in Switzerland for more than 13 years now. This summer I have focused on creating more swiss imagery of new architectural landmarks. By no means a completed project, but rather a work in progress, let us go through a few sites in my region, the French speaking part of Switzerland.

Cantonal Museum of Fine Arts (MCBA) in Lausanne, Switzerland

Cantonal Museum of Fine Arts, Lausanne, Switzerland

The new building of the MCBA was inaugurated in October 2019. The project started in 2009, with the acquisition of locomotive depot next to the train station of Lausanne. Following a contest, the proposal of Fabrizio Barozzi et Alberto Veiga (EBV - Estudio Barozzi Veiga, Barcelone) was selected. The design integrates well the past industrial background and proximity to the train tracks, while is subtle enough to suggest hidden fine arts inside.

The new Museum is just the first building of a few more under construction, forming an art platform code-named Platforme10. The easy access – next to the main train station in Lausanne, and the already showing striking architecture, will most certainly make the area popular with both the locals and visitors. I will follow the next stages of the project with my camera.

Hans-Wilsdorf Bridge in Geneva

Hans Wilsdorf Bridge, Geneva, Switzerland

It was inaugurated in 2012 and replaced a degrading, but long-standing temporary bridge over the river Arve connecting two blooming districts (Plainpalais with Acacias) in Geneva. Its design looks alien and resembles the Bird’s Nest Stadium in Beijing. Both are using steel beams to support the weight and the loads of the structure, which have been optimized by computer simulation.

Although a public building, the new bridge was requested and financed by Hans Wilsdorf Foundation, owner of Rolex. For those not familiar with the history of Rolex, Hans Wilsdorf is the founder of Rolex. In 1944 after the death of his wife, he donated all his shares to the not-for-profit Hans Wilsdorf Foundation.
The design of the bridge is signed by the local architects Brodbeck-Roulet, who also designed the Rolex headquarters, visible in the background.

Its beauty started to attract a lot of visitors, and certainly it will soon be considered a touristic attraction.

Globe of Science and Innovation – visiting centre of CERN in Meyrin, Geneva

CERN, Globe of Science and Innovation, Visitor Centre, Meyrin, Geneva, Switzerland

40 meters in diameter, this wooden structure symbolises our planet. It was originally built in Neuchatel for Expo.02 as Palais de l’Equilibre by Hervé Dessimoz and Thomas Buchi, a model of sustainable building. Roughly the same size as the dome of St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome, it has two concentric spheres nested within one another and is built from several types of timber.

After the exposition, the Swiss Confederation donated it to CERN. It was therefore moved to Meyrin, nearby Geneva, and re-opened to celebrate 50 years of the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) in 2004. In 2010 it was renovated and opened with a new permanent exhibit about particle physics, while in 2018, the surrounding area was re-designed to create l’Esplanade des Particules.

Westside Shopping and Leisure Centre in Bern

Westside Shopping and Leisure Centre in Bern, Switzerland

Completed in 2008, the Westside Shopping and Leisure Centre is a massive shopping mall built at the entrance of Bern from the west, right on top of A1 highway coming from Lausanne.

Designed by Daniel Libeskind, it has a crystal-like daring structure. A steel concrete skeleton supports a wood façade, which aged slightly since construction. The massive, relatively low complex is built over the highway and extends well on both sides. Apart from extensive shopping galleries, it also hosts a hotel, spa and aquapark and a cinema.

As many times as I drove under it, I was always awed by the view entering Bern. The windows illumination change colours, every time appearing somewhat different. The October night I finally stopped and made a tour outside, they were coloured in deep red, creating a striking image.

Mirage, Gstaad

Mirage, Gstaad, Switzerland

I am closing the list with a temporary art installation by Doug Aitken – the Mirage. Built as an installation for the art festival Elevation 1049: Frequencies in early 2019, it will be disassembled soon, in January 2021. If you want to see it, make haste – you will probably catch it under a thick layer of snow.

The mirage is a house of mirrors. Both inside and outside is clad with mirrors, perfectly reflecting the surrounding landscape of rolling hills and alpine peaks. It creates an eery feeling of a house not being there like a mirage. The seasons are amplified, creating stunning new landscapes with each passing month.


A wider collection of modern architecture sites in Switzerland is being prepared in this gallery, which I plan to extend by new additions in the following months and years, so make sure you bookmark and check again later. And hopefully, there will be a follow up on this article…

Aquatis, Lausanne

Aquatis, Lausanne

Rolex Learning Center EPFL, Lausanne, Switzerland

Learning Center, EPFL, Lausanne

Olymic House, Lausanne, Switzerland

Olympic House, Lausanne

PS: This month, I have joined Instagram. If you like my work, feel free to follow for new images from Switzerland and the rest of the world: www.instagram.com/bogdan.lazar.3

November 27th, 2020


Instagram: bogdan.lazar.3