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The Author

Shawn Swisher was born in Phoenix, Arizona, and graduated cum laude from the University of Southern California School of Architecture in May of 2010 with a B.Arch. His architectural work while at USC has been exhibited internationally. At USC, he was awarded as a Global Scholar Prize recipient, as a Discovery Scholar, and as the 2010 A. Quincy Jones Memorial Scholar from the School of Architecture. In April of 2010, he was awarded the 2010 Jon A. Jerde Traveling Fellowship to research the work of Peter Zumthor and the role of visceral expression in architecture.

He has worked as an architectural designer and graphic designer in Los Angeles and Phoenix.

You can view his professional resume here.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. monika permalink
    July 25, 2011 1:34 pm

    Hi! Great and helpful journeys and reviews! I’m currently starting on my thesis about Peter Zumthor, wonder if you managed to contact him personally and maybe you know best ways to get hold of him? Would be much appreciated!

    Kind Regards,
    Monika S.

    • July 25, 2011 3:32 pm


      Thanks for the kind words. I’m glad to hear you’re doing some work on Zumthor. Let me tell you that it was quite the ordeal contacting him. After many attempts to speak with him, I received a very kind email from the man himself explaining why he would be unable to speak with me but appreciated my work. I do know of some people that have gone and knocked on his door in Haldenstein, and some have even been able to speak with him that way, but it rarely ended well. He’s a bit of a recluse, and doesn’t appreciate being visited without permission (neither would I, and I found it a bit rude that some would go to those lengths).

      As I did, I would contact his office by email or by letter and very politely ask to speak with him. You may get lucky and he’ll be free when you request. Just know that a lot of people have wanted a piece of him since he was awarded the Pritzker, and he doesn’t particularly care for the attention.

      Please let me know if you have any other questions.


      • December 10, 2011 3:03 pm

        Hi! Great blog and fantastic photos! I am currently doing my master thesis in architecture and engineering in Copenhagen, Denmark and am using the work of Zumthor as my point of departure for descussing the role of site specific architecture in the development of socially sustainable architecture in outskirt areas in Denmark and Norway. Would you happen to have detail drawings (sections preferably) of St. Benedict Chapel and the Thermal Baths? I am especially interested in the joints.If not, could you please inform me of the e-mail adress for Zumthor’s office. Thanks a lot.

        Kind regards, Stina

  2. September 17, 2011 6:11 pm


    I’m so glad I stumbled upon your blog. I am at the beginning stages of a traveling scholarship awarded by the University of Oregon on the subject of writing and architecture. I am currently in Paris for two weeks, then headed to Germany and Switzerland to tour some Zumthor work. Would you mind if I emailed you for some advice about seeing his projects? I know there are probably particulars and logistics that I have not covered, and I would be much appreciative if you had a few minutes to discuss your experience.

    nick venezia

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