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Peter Zumthor —
born on April 26, 1943,
Peter Zumthor is a Swiss architect and winner of the 2009 Pritzker Prize and 2013 RIBA Royal Gold Medal... (wikipedia)
I'm not mainly interested in what buildings mean as symbols or vehicles for ideas.
If you look at the Earth without architecture, it's sometimes a little bit unpleasant. So there is this basic human need to do shelter in the broadest sense of the word, whether it's a movie theater or a simple log cabin in the mountains. This is the core of architecture: To provide a space for human beings.
I work a little bit like a sculptor. When I start, my first idea for a building is with the material. I believe architecture is about that. It's not about paper, it's not about forms. It's about space and material.
Architecture is exposed to life. If its body is sensitive enough, it can assume a quality that bears witness to past life.
Designing is a matter of concentration. You go deep into what you want to do. It's about intensive research, really. The concentration is warm and intimate and like the fire inside the earth - intense but not distorted. You can go to a place, really feel it in your heart. It's actually a beautiful feeling.