Into the Rose Garden

Photography Karin Gauch, Fabien Schwartz
Photography Karin Gauch, Fabien Schwartz
Photography Georg Aerni

Into the Rose Garden, 2020
Permanent public artwork
Competition: 2016
Completion: 2020
Polished and sandblasted concrete
18 artworks for a total surface of 616m2
Client: Stiftung für Studentisches Wohnen Zürich (SSWZ)
Architects: Atelier Scheidegger Keller, Zurich
Concrete surface specialists: Divico AG

'Into the Rose Garden' is a public art (Kunst und Bau) project for the Rosengarten Student Housing in Zurich. The project was inspired by the name of the area (Rosengarten), the long extinct rose garden it refers to and a poem by T.S. Eliot. An individual artwork was created for each of the 18 flats by polishing and sandblasting the concrete floors of the central living room. Each geometric pattern is based on the abstracted plan of a famous historic rose garden, from Samarkand to Helmingham, from L’Haÿ to Jaipur – the diversity of references mirroring the diversity of the international ETHZ student population. The artwork does not add any material to the building, but rather removes some by polishing certain surfaces of the existing concrete floors. In doing that, it reveals the textural quality of the material and creates new reflexions and light plays inside the flats. Depending on the viewpoint of the observer the artwork appears as a watery reflection or nearly disappears. Classical rose garden designs are often concentric, which plays well into the idea of the living room as central point of the student communal life. 

Making of:

Typologies of rose gardens
Model Photo
Model Photo
Chosen patterns
Floor plans ground floor and 2nd floor showing distribution of 18 artworks
Making Of