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Diener & Diener


Diener & Diener is an international architectural practice based in Basel. It took on this name in 1980, when Roger Diener (1950) officially joined the practice of his father, Marcus Diener (1918-1999).
Active since 1942, Marcus Diener’s studio had already constructed a huge number of projects (homes, offices, buildings and cinemas) in the fifties and sixties. When Roger joined the practice, his projects in partnership with J. Erb, D. Righetti, A. Ruedi and W. Schett soon added an international dimension to the studio (in addition to Basel, it now has design offices in Berlin and Malmoe).
Roger Diener combines the practice of his profession with teaching (1987-1994) at Ecole Polytechnique in Lausanne, Harvard, Amsterdam and the Royal Academy in Copenhagen.
Specialising in urban housing developments and big office and retail complexes, “characterised by simple volumes and inspired by a minimalism in perennial tension with the space around it” (Treccani), the studio became famous “with construction of 4 housing developments completing the historic structure of the working-class district of Kleinbasel, reinterpreting the density typical of 19th century commissions” (Bideau).
Even in its earliest works in Basel, the studio pursued “grammatical reconstruction” (also visible in the St. Alban and Burgfelderplatz buildings) giving “citations strong linguistic potential, critically reinterpreting their urban context”.
One example is the office building in Hochstrasse (1988), where “the language of neo-modernism gives way to a minimalist expressive system”.
This was followed by a series of projects (the Fides Building, Building in Picassoplatz, SBV Training Centre) in which the tension of construction (implemented primarily through particular ways of working with windows and doors) reveal the studio’s focus on plastic and morphological issues.
With Italian influences (A. Rossi, G. Grassi), Diener & Diener’s urban projects aim to “give single large, anonymous constructions a metaphysical presence”.
Since the year 2000 the studio has not only continued to build residential projects but worked on expansions such as the Swiss Embassy in Berlin (2002), the Modern Art Gallery in Rome (2004) and the Museum of Natural History in Berlin (2010).
Diener & Diener famous works and projects
- Shoah Memorial Drancy (with E- Lapière and J.L. Cohen), Drancy (France), 2011
- Mobimo Tower, Zurich (Switzerland), 2011
- Extension of the eastern wing, Museum of Natural History, Berlin (Germany), 2010
- Music House, Benedictine Monastery in Einsiedeln (Switzerland), 2010
- Novartis, Campus, Forum 3, Basel (Switzerland), 2005
- Expansion of the Modern Art Gallery, Rome (Italy), 2004
- Expansion of the Swiss Embassy, Berlin (Germany), 2002
- Ruhr Zeche Museum, Essen (Germany), 2002
- PasquArt Cultural Centre, Biel (Switzerland), 2000
- Migros Shopping Centre, Lucerne (Switzerland), 2000
- Neue Promenade multi-purpose buildings, Berlin (Germany), 1998
- Housing and office complex, Warteckhof, Basel (Switzerland), 1997
- Home in Rue de la Roquette, Paris (France), 1996
- SBV Training Centre, Basel (Switzerland), 1994
- Gmurzynska Gallery, Cologne (Germany), 1991
- Office building in Hochstrasse, Basel (Switzerland), 1988
- Multi-unit residential development in St. Alban-Tal, Basel (Switzerland), 1986
- Buildings on Hammerstrasse and Riehenring, Basel (Switzerland), 1981-1985
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