Vitra 1950–2017

The exhibition at the Vitra Campus in Weil am Rhein offers an overview on the Swiss company’s world with special insights and suggestions, combining a variety of media.

“Project Vitra – Design, Architecture, Communications (1950–2017)”, Vitra Fire Station, Weil am Rhein, 2017
The Vitra Campus Fire Station building in Weil am Rhein is showcasing the exhibition “Project Vitra – Design, Architecture, Communications (1950–2017)”, an overview on the Vitra world, with suggestions and new insights. Seen for the first time at the Philadelphia Museum of Art (USA) in 2014, the exhibition combines a variety of media and reflects the project-like character of the company through its compositional structure: a lively collage of products and objects, historical materials, photographs, drawings, graphics, films and models.


The exhibition guides visitors through the early years of the family-owned business, provides insights into the origins of Vitra as a shopfitting company (the name ‘Vitra’ is derived from the word ‘vitrine’), and describes how the encounter between Willi and Erika Fehlbaum and Charles and Ray Eames in 1957 evolved into a pioneering partnership. French designer Dorothée Meilichzon also created a scenic installation at VitraHaus based on the concept of contemporary working space: an office within a small apartment, a shared working space and a terrace overlooking the city’s roofs.

“Project Vitra – Design, Architecture, Communications (1950–2017)”, Vitra Fire Station, Weil am Rhein, 2017
“Project Vitra – Design, Architecture, Communications (1950–2017)”, Vitra Fire Station, Weil am Rhein, 2017
Furthermore, there are many discoveries that can be made at the Vitra Campus. It was here that Frank Gehry realised his first building outside the USA: the Vitra Design Museum. The Fire Station by Zaha Hadid was her very first constructed work. Prior to the completion of his Conference Pavilion in Weil, Tadao Ando had never worked outside of Japan. A rare Petrol Station designed by Jean Prouvé is located here, and the iconic VitraHaus, a stacked assemblage of twelve house-shaped elements, was conceived by Basel-based architects Herzog & de Meuron. With the opening of their new Vitra Schaudepot last year, the large furniture collection of the Vitra Design Museum was made accessible to the public.
Herzog & de Meuron, Vitra Schaudepot, 2016
Herzog & de Meuron, Vitra Schaudepot, 2016

until 3 September 2017
Project Vitra – Design, Architecture, Communications (1950–2017)
Fire Station, Vitra Campus, South entrance
Charles-Eames-Strasse, 2
Weil am Rhein

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