‘This 8,000 sq. ft. building owns the world’s biggest Vitra Furniture Collection yet.’
In 1989, Frank Ghery’s Vitra Design Museum became the gatehouse for the Vitra factory and collection exhibits. This 8,000 sq. ft. building owns the world’s biggest Vitra Furniture Collection.

As commonly seen with Ghery’s architectural designs, the Vitra Gallery follows the deconstructive sculptural concept. However, in this specific building we can see how he incorporates the interior materiality with the exterior white plaster and titanium alloy.

The shape of the building is a mix between towers, ramps, cubes, and volumes that come together to determine:
  1. Light access inside the interior spaces
  2. Building program.
It’s clear that the intersection of towers, ramps, stairs, and volumes creates a sense of ambiguity and confusion to the interior program. Nevertheless, this intersection of volumes offer interior spaces that are dynamic and intriguing. Spaces that interplay between one another, providing the visitor with a twirl motion experience.

According to Paul Heyer, an architecture critic, this building is “a continuous changing swirl of white forms.” However, if we compare the Vitra Design Museum with the adjacent Nicholas Grimshaw building, we find a clear relation in the height and size.


Frank Ghery
Mon-Fri 10am-6pm
Weil am Rhein, Germany
Texts, photographs and diagrams by Michelle Chedraui.