Architect Peter Zumthor is the recipient of the 2013 Royal Gold Medal from the Royal Institute of British Architects and the 2009 Pritzker Architecture Prize, among many other international awards. The Pritzker jury noted: “All of Peter Zumthor’s buildings have a strong, timeless presence. He has a rare talent of combining clear and rigorous thought with a truly poetic dimension, resulting in works that never cease to inspire.”
Zumthor trained as a cabinet-maker at his father’s shop and then as a designer and an architect in Switzerland and New York. He began his career working for the Department of Preservation of Monuments of Canton of Graubünden, Switzerland, and established his own practice in 1978 in Haldenstein, Switzerland. Zumthor has been a professor at the Accademia di Architettura di Mendrisio, Università Della Svizzera Italiana (1996–2008) and a visiting professor at the University of Southern California, SCI-ARC, the Technische Universität in Munich, and the Graduate School of Design at Harvard University. His works include the Therme Vals, Switzerland (1996); the Kunsthaus Bregenz, Austria (1997); Bruder Klaus Field Chapel, Wachendorf, Germany (2007); Kolumba Art Museum, Cologne (2007); Steilneset, Memorial for the Victims of the Witch Trials in the Finnmark, Vardø, Norway (2011); and the Serpentine Gallery Pavilion, London (2011).
Zumthor is one of the most site-sensitive architects, able to balance core requirements with cutting-edge approaches. His proposed design for LACMA’s new permanent collection building is an innovative, organic form that makes efficient and inspired use of its site while presenting the museum’s collection like never before.