Herzog & de Meuron

founded by Jacques Herzog and Pierre de Meuron in 1978


Herzog & de Meuron Basel Ltd.,[1] or Herzog & de Meuron Architekten, BSA/SIA/ETH (HdM),[citation needed] is a Swiss architecture firm with its head office in Basel, Switzerland.[1] The careers of founders and senior partners Jacques Herzog (born 19 April 1950) and Pierre de Meuron (born 8 May 1950) closely paralleled one another, with both attending the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) in Zurich. They are perhaps best known for their conversion of the giant Bankside Power Station in London to the new home of Tate Modern. Jacques Herzog and Pierre de Meuron have been visiting professors at the Harvard University Graduate School of Design since 1994 and professors at ETH Zürich since 1999.


Jacques Herzog
Herzog & de Meuron was founded in Basel in 1978.[2] In 2001, Herzog & de Meuron were awarded the Pritzker Prize, the highest of honours in architecture. Jury chairman J. Carter Brown commented, “One is hard put to think of any architects in history that have addressed the integument of architecture with greater imagination and virtuosity.” This was in reference to HdM’s innovative use of exterior materials and treatments, such as silkscreened glass. Architecture critic and Pritzker juror Ada Louise Huxtable summarized HdM’s approach concisely: “They refine the traditions of modernism to elemental simplicity, while transforming materials and surfaces through the exploration of new treatments and techniques.”[3] In 2006, The New York Times Magazine called them “one of the most admired architecture firms in the world.”[4]

HdM’s early works were reductivist pieces of modernity that registered on the same level as the minimalist art of Donald Judd.[citation needed] However, their recent work at Prada Tokyo, the Barcelona Forum Building and the Beijing National Stadium for the 2008 Olympic Games, suggest a changing attitude.[4] The shapes and forms of some of the works suggest art glass and objects d’art that one would see on a coffee table, like an art deco ashtray or quirky container for chocolates – a building becomes a blown-up version of desk art because the computer can do it, mimic the plasticity of the medium, and make it possible as a feat of engineering.

HdM’s commitment of articulation through materiality is a common thread through all their projects.[clarification needed] Their formal gestures have generally progressed from the purist simplicity of rectangular forms to more complex and dynamic geometries. The architects often cite Joseph Beuys as an enduring artistic inspiration and collaborate with different artists on each architectural project. Their success can be attributed to their skills in revealing unfamiliar or unknown relationships by utilizing innovative materials.[citation needed]

Herzog & de Meuron has faced criticism for their vision on migrant workers in Beijing during the construction of the Beijing National Stadium. In a July 2008 interview with German magazine Der Spiegel, Jacques Herzog was criticised for not having done more to ensure the conditions under which migrant workers constructed the stadium by the interviewer, to which Jacques Herzog responded that the influence of the architect on the construction process is declining rapidly.[5]

On the other hand, some scholars such as Deyan Sudjic have stated that the very building of the stadium sent a signal from the Western architecture firm to the Chinese government to change societal norms.[6] However, others have argued that this statement would go with any stadium design, decreasing the potential of the signal.[7]

Selected projects

Prada Store in Tokyo

IKMZ, Cottbus, Brandenburg

Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, Minnesota

BBVA headquarters in Madrid, Spain (2009–2015)

  • Elbphilharmonie, HafenCity in Hamburg (2007–2016)
  • Completed
  • 1992 Goetz Collection, Munich, Germany
  • 1997 Rudin House, Leymen, France[8]
  • 1998 Dominus Winery, Napa Valley, California
  • 1999 Swiss Federal Railways switchtower, Basel, Switzerland
  • 2000 Tate Modern, Bankside, London, UK
  • 2002 St. Jakob-Park, Basel, Switzerland
  • 2003 Laban Dance Centre, Deptford Creek, London, UK
  • 2003 Prada Aoyama, Tokyo, Japan
  • 2004 Forum Building, Barcelona (since 2011, this building hosts the Museum of Natural Sciences of Barcelona)
  • 2004 Informations-, Kommunikations- und Medienzentrum Cottbus, Cottbus, Germany
  • 2005 M. H. de Young Memorial Museum, San Francisco, California
  • 2005 Walker Art Center expansion, Minneapolis, Minnesota
  • 2005 Allianz Arena football stadium, Munich
  • 2007 40 Bond Street, New York City, USA[9]
  • 2008 Beijing National Stadium, Beijing, China
  • 2008 CaixaForum Madrid, Madrid, Spain
  • 2008 Tenerife Espacio de las Artes, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain
  • 2009 VitraHaus, Weil am Rhein, Germany
  • 2010 1111 Lincoln Road parking garage, Miami Beach, Florida, USA
  • 2010 Museum der Kulturen, Basel, Switzerland
  • 2012 Serpentine Gallery Pavilion, London, UK[10]
  • 2012 Parrish Art Museum, Water Mill, New York[11]
  • 2013 Pérez Art Museum Miami, Miami, Florida
  • 2013 Messe Basel, Basel, Switzerland
  • 2015 Roche Tower Basel, Switzerland
  • 2015 Blavatnik School of Government, University of Oxford, UK
  • 2015 Nouveau Stade de Bordeaux, France
  • 2015 BBVA headquarters, Madrid, Spain
  • 2015 Unterlinden Museum, Colmar, France
  • 2016 Tate Modern 2, Bankside, London
  • 2016 Feltrinelli Porta Volta, Milan, Italy[12]
  • 2016 Elbe Philharmonic Hall, Hamburg, Germany
  • Current
  • Berggruen Institute, Los Angeles, California[13]
  • El Punto Religious-Community Center, Ciudad Juárez, Mexico
  • Contemporary Art Museum Barranca de Huentitán, Guadalajara, Mexico
  • Plaza de España, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Tenerife (2007)
  • Kinderspital Zürich, Zurich, Switzerland
  • 56 Leonard Street, New York City
  • Beirut Terraces, Beirut, Lebanon
  • M+, Hong Kong (2018) – with TFP Farrells
  • National Library of Israel (2019)
  • Roche tower, the tallest Swiss skyscraper with 178m, Basel, Switzerland
  • Vancouver Art Gallery[14]
  • Tai Kwun, Hong Kong – with Purcell and Rocco Design[15]
  • Awards
  • 1999 Schock Prize
  • 2001 Prix de l’Équerre d’Argent, Rue Des Suisses, Paris
  • 2001 Pritzker Prize
  • 2003 Stirling Prize, for the Laban Dance Centre
  • 2007 RIBA Royal Gold Medal and Praemium Imperiale
  • 2009 Lubetkin Prize for the Beijing National Stadium

“Credits.” Herzog & de Meuron. Retrieved on 11 October 2012. “Herzog & de Meuron Basel Ltd. Rheinschanze 6 4056 Basel, Switzerland”
“Biography of the architect: Herzog & de Meuron”. Floornature.com (in Italian). Retrieved 2017-10-16.
Jackie Craven. “Master Architects”. About.com. Retrieved 2007-03-15.
Arthur Lubow (21 May 2006). “The China Syndrome”. The New York Times Magazine. Retrieved 2007-03-15. subscription required
Knöfel, Ulrike; Beyer, Susanne (July 30, 2008). “Only an Idiot Would Have Said No”. spiegel.de. Der Spiegel. Herzog: We can always exchange a few friendly words with the mayor, but the realities have changed in construction management. We are dealing with a world that, paradoxically enough, is often at odds with the architecture. On the one hand, the architect is highly respected, and architecture also has the capacity to bring about radical social change. On the other hand, the architect’s influence on the course of construction is declining rapidly.
Sudjic, Deyan (April 7, 2011). The Edifice Complex. Penguin. ISBN 9780241952771.
Owen, Graham (June 2, 2009). Architecture, Ethics and Globalization. Routledge. p. 9. ISBN 9781134348299.
“Rudin House”. wikiarquitectura. Retrieved 2017-12-20.
“40 Bond in Detail – Triple Mint”. Archived from the original on March 4, 2014. Retrieved 2014-03-07.
“Serpentine Gallery Pavilion 2012 by Herzog & de Meuron and Ai Weiwei”. Serpentine Galleries. Retrieved 2017-10-16.
“Parrish Art Museum – Domus”. Retrieved 2016-02-10.
“327 FELTRINELLI PORTA VOLTA – HERZOG & DE MEURON”. www.herzogdemeuron.com. Retrieved 6 April 2018.
Curwen, Thomas. “On his Santa Monica mountaintop, a billionaire envisions lofty thoughts on politics and culture”, Los Angeles Times, April 30, 2016.
“Herzog & de Meuron’s design for new Vancouver Art Gallery unveiled.” Canadian Architect, September 29, 2015. Accessed September 29, 2015.
“Project Teams” Tai Kwun, January 22, 2017. Accessed January 22, 2017.
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Official website
Pritzker Architecture Prize profile
Herzog & de Meuron: archeology of the mind exhibition at the Canadian Centre for Architecture. 23 October 2002 to 6 April 2003
Serpentine Gallery Pavilion 2012
Rue des Suisses in Paris