All posts by Jacob Petty

Kolumba Museum

The Kolumba Museum is a museum in Cologne, Germany that was designed by Peter Zumthor and built from 2003 to 2007.  Before the museum was there, there was a church there that was partially destroyed in World War 2.  This museum now shares a site with the remaining ruins of the old church and also shares the Gothic architecture of this church.

Bruder Klaus Chapel

Like many of his other works, the Bruder Klaus Field Chapel displays a level of simplicity that Peter Zumthor was known for.  While this chapel may not look like much at first, the level of creativity that went into this building makes it one of the most popular religious landmarks in Germany.  The building blends in with the landscape around it, and is a little bare looking, but there is a very unique design on the interior.  The interior consists of charred wood and concrete on the walls and floors to give it a very rustic look.  There is no electricity, plumbing, or running water in this building, which give it a very old feel.  The top of the building is open to let the sun in, so this building has a very different feel to it depending on what time of year you are visiting.

© Samuel Ludwig

© Samuel Ludwig

St. Benedict Chapel

Built in 1988, the Saint Benedict Chapel was designed by Peter Zumthor in Sumvitg, Graubünden.  There was an older chapel there before this one was constructed, but it had been destroyed by an avalanche.  This is one of Zumthor’s first pieces of work, and really shows his level of simplicity and craftsmanship that he is widely recognized and awarded for.  The materials on the inside and outside of this building are synonymous with the other homes and buildings in this village, which really make this chapel look like it belongs to this village.  To avoid another avalanche, this chapel was built where it would be protected by a surrounding forest.

Courtesy of Felipe Camus

Courtesy of Felipe Camus

Therme Vals

Therme Vals is a hotel and spa in Vals, Switzerland.  It was built over thermal springs in this area.  Peter Zumthor was the architect for this building, and it was constructed from 1993 to 1996.  The spa part of the building was designed to look older than the hotel, with a more natural look like caves.  The spa was built with quarzite slabs and it fits together almost like a puzzle.  The rood pieces do not fit together, so there is glass in between them to prevent water leakage.  This makes the roof look as if it is almost floating.


Kunsthaus Bregenz

Kunstas Bregenz is a museum in Bregenz, Voralberg in Austria that is home to exhibits of contemporary art from various parts of the world.  This museum was designed by Peter Zumthor and was built from 1990 to 1997.  According to Zumthor “The art museum stands in the light of Lake Constance. It is made of glass and steel and a cast concrete stone mass which endows the interior of the building with texture and spatial composition. From the outside, the building looks like a lamp. It absorbs the changing light of the sky, the haze of the lake, it reflects light and color and gives an intimation of its inner life according to the angle of vision, the daylight, and the weather.”  This building was designed as a day time museum and is a great example of architectural minimalism.


File:Bregenz kunsthaus zumthor 2002 01.jpg

Peter Zumthor Intro

Peter Zumthor is a an architect that was born in Switzerland, and has won many different awards and recognition for his works of architecture.  He has awards almost every year dating back to 1987, and his most recent one was the 2013 RIBA Royal Gold Medal.  Some of his most famous works include Kunsthaus Bregenz, Therme Vals, St. Benedict Chapel, Bruder Klaus Chapel, and Kolumba-Erzbischöfliches Diözesan museum.  I will go into further detail on these works in my later blogs on Zumthor’s work.

Oklahoma Memorial Stadium

Oklahoma Memorial Stadium has always stuck out to me, from the time I was just a ten year old kid going to his first OU game to being a senior here at OU and going to my last game as a student.  I love how this stadium follows the same architecture scheme as the rest of the campus and is located at the center of the campus.  When some buildings are all built in a similar fashion, they tend to blend in with each other.  But that is not the case here on campus.  The Bizzell and Memorial Stadium are both very easily identifiable buildings to anyone that has ever been to OU or watched college football.  I hate to see the iconic “Oklahoma” scoreboard get knocked down, but I know the renovations will look even nicer.


Superdome-New Orleans

The Superdome in New Orleans is a one of a kind of football stadium.  If I did not know what it was, I would not have guessed that it is home to a professional football team.  But on the inside, it gives off a great football vibe.  Its not uncomfortable and it gets loud in the dome.  I will always have a special memory at the Superdome from when we played and beat Alabama in the Sugar Bowl.  My dad and I decided to go last minute, and it turned out to be a great trip and an even better game.


Reunion Tower-Dallas

When I think about Dallas, I think about the very distinct skyline that it has.  This skyline reminds me of my favorite sports teams, my family, and home.  The Dallas skyline’s most distinct building is Reunion Tower, or the ball.  It is usually lit up white at night, but it often changes colors for special events.  My favorite design that it lights up with is the OU logo when we beat Texas.  This building is a very distinct part of the Dallas skyline and it helps to remind me of home.

Devon Energy Tower

I have lived in Norman for three years now, and I have made several trips to Oklahoma City during this time.  I have gone for sporting events, for the restaurants, and simply to explore a little.  This past February, I was able to go into Devon Tower for a formal event.  This building changed my perception of Oklahoma City for the best.  This is by far the nicest building in the OKC area.   I was able to go to the top floor and look over the city, so I was able to look at all of OKC from above.  It was a really cool  experience and this is what I tell people about when they ask me if I’ve been to Oklahoma City.