Peter Zumthor’s Zinc Mine Museum in Norway’s Allmannajuvet Gorge

Peter Zumthor’s Zinc Mine Museum | Arne Espeland

Happy birthday to minimalist architect Peter Zumthor, born on this day April 26, 1943 in Basel, Switzerland.

Peter Zumthor designed a graceful, stilted building to tell the story of Norway’s Allmannajuvet Gorge Zinc Mine, which operated from 1881 to 1899. He also designed the nearby café for the museum with the same elegant grace.

Zumthor commented on the mine and the intention of the design: “The working conditions must have been terrible. You cannot stand upright in the tunnels, you have to go miles into the mountain, where it’s cold in summer and winter, so it gave us the idea to be modest in everything we did. Not poor, but modest.”

Here is the sleek, clean museum (above) and café (below) at Norway’s Allmannajuvet zinc mines, designed by Peter Zumthor. Photographs by Arne Espeland.

Peter Zumthor’s Zinc Mine Museum Café | Arne Espeland