Therme Vals is ancient. It exists outside of time and space in a carefully articulated alpine heterotopia. It was designed, or perhaps discovered, in the late-20th century by architect Peter Zumthor. It is mysterious. It is the secret that no one dares to look for, much less reveal.
Finding it is not easy: Vals is not a big city. It is obscure nowhere, gorgeous Switzerland. This architectural pilgrimage requires a tram, two trains, and a bus. There is a forty Swiss Franc day pass admission. A single room would have cost 265 Swiss Francs a night.
When you finally get there, you find out that photography is strictly forbidden. As is leaving for a lunch break. Not that you would find anything if you tried. It’s a desolate wonder, guarding its secrets viciously.
But we are architecture students. We had to take pictures. Despite three separate warnings from the highly observant staff we pressed on with our documentary mandate. To capture the secret sanctuary of Peter Zumthor and represent it to the world.
Here is what we found. Its dangerous; be careful with it, and don’t look at it for too long.
[ architecture, patrick di rito, Peter Zumthor, photography, shota vashakmadze, Therme Vals ]