DADO. Built and Inhabited by Rudolf Olgiati and Valerio Olgiati
di Selina Walder
Valerio Olgiati has worked as an architect in Los Angeles, Zurich, and, since 2008, in Flims. He has been a visiting professor at the Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule (Swiss Federal Institute of Technology) in Zurich, the AA in London, and at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York. Since 2002 he has been professor at the Accademia di architettura in Mendrisio and since autumn 2009 he has held the Kenzo Tange Chair at Harvard. The unmistakable straight lines and independence of his buildings has brought him international attention. The Olgiati’s family estate is located in the historical town center of Flims. Rudolf Olgiati (1910–95) purchased the property, known as Dado, in 1930 and throughout his life used it to realize his architectural thoughts and ideas. Today, the son is living in his father’s house, and in 2008 he set up his much-admired architectural firm on the former site of the barn. This publication portrays the life and work of both architects using the example of the house and studio—that is, through the transformations they have undergone at the hands of their residents over a period of nearly eighty years. It shows personal furniture and objects, the individual layout and design of the spaces, and hence the penchants and attitudes of the two architects. At the same time this unusual portrait documents not only the relationship between father and son but also the characters of two generations and their understanding of architecture and aesthetics.