© Swiss Re / Fotografie: Luca Zanier, 2020 / Kunst: Tobias Rehberger, 2020


Corporate art on ceramics

New space for architectural art

Zurich, Switzerland – In the Swiss capital of Zurich, an extraordinary architectural artwork emerged. The interior of the clubhouse at the headquarters of the Zurich-based company Swiss Re has been refined with a one of a kind art.

Four architectural art installations impress both in shape and colour. Artists of international fame were invited to design the concept: Jorge Pardo, Tobias Rehberger and Pae White. Ceramics play a central role. We could’t be more excited and proudly invite you to learn more about the manufacturing process of this art on ceramics project.

Ceramic shape and colour

For the first approach between the artists and the ceramics, more than 149 colors were ceramically sampled. At this stage, it was also a question of determining the gloss level of the respective colors. each individual color was available with a matte finish, a high-gloss finish and a silk matte finish. Our experts experimented until the artist’s exact idea had been fulfilled. In the meantime the creation of the different tile shapes proceeded. The aim was to give this solid and durable material a light appearance. All in all, the development alone took two years.

Art in architecture with ceramics

From pigment to multicolored art object and from sand to three-dimensional architectural ceramics: It takes a lot of commitment from everyone involved to finally produce over 9,000 ceramic tiles transformed into art. 60% of the three-dimensional ceramic tiles are designed with individual décors according to the artists’ specifications. Half of the objects follow one of 22 different 3d shapes. Some tiles are black in their basic color and yet the yellow on them shines, like the ceramic yellow on white glossy glaze. Even shades that are difficult to achieve in the ceramic color space burned out impressively well in the end.

Unique pieces made by hand

Once the challenge of color and surface determination was overcome, the handwork in the ceramic manufactory began. Each individual molded tile was made manually and decorated by hand. The molding process also required consideration of the preparatory work for later installation on the walls. This step of work is provided with the highest standard in all our architectural projects. A hidden connection to the substructure is standard design for us. In most cases, this detail is also developed and implemented on a customer-specific basis.

The project actors

The Art created here represents a corporate art on ceramics project that meets the highest standards of quality and attention to detail. With professional partners, it is a solvable task. The result was achieved thanks to the excellent cooperation between the lead architect’s office SAM Architekten in Zurich and the Sankt Gallen façade specialists for aesthetic bespoke construction, GFT Fassaden AG , as well as the Lindner Group. In addition, all those responsible for the project on the client’s side and executing companies in the adjacent trades contributed. 

The result

Art that lasts. The artworks can be admired in a breathtaking photographic documentation. Photographer Luca Zanier has succeeded in capturing the unfolding of this art on ceramics project and thus making it accessible to the public. The Art at Swiss Re website also provides further insights. In all other respects, the building is reserved for guests and employees of the building owner. As ceramics are among the most durable materials on our planet, these artworks will hopefully inspire many more people’s eyes and hearts.

Silvie Guardiola

m&r Manufaktur GmbH
Kossmannstraße 27
66119 Saarbruecken

Pleurtuit-Str. 12-14
56235 Ransbach-Baumbach

Tel.: +49 681 / 85 96 – 363
E-Mail manufaktur@mkw.eu


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