Every Beginning is White

Reigoldswil, CH

The fireplace shines in a wall of golden travertine, the bathroom is wrapped in dark, glittering Bisazza mosaics, and the guest suite features a wall made of anthracite Mustang slate. In his house, architect Danny-John Wanner celebrates the sensual colorful beauty of the materials.

But every beginning is white. Just like the sheet of paper on which thoughts take shape. For one day each week, Wanner stays away from the hustle and bustle of his architectural studio in Muttenz and works from home. Then it’s time to create.

He climbs the narrow metal staircase into his home office, which is kept quite neutral. None of the furnishings in this room are allowed to interrupt his concentration. Piles of paper, magazines and books cover the long white USM Haller sideboard, which runs along the rear wall of the room. “I have always been a fan of USM,” explains Wanner, “and I have always admired USM furniture in various architectural firms as well as in hotels.” The white cast floor provides additional space to spread large plans and to sketch designs. From the white desk on the gallery’s balustrade, which Wanner designed himself, along with all the built-in components, the eye falls down to the living room with the fireplace, the long dining table with its walnut surface and the Panton chairs.

Danny-John Wanner’s modern home in the hills of the idyllic Jura Mountains is the result of a perfect renovation. It originated from the total renovation of a “rather simple, electricity-free” village house from the ’70s: a showpiece that the architect uses to encourage potential clients to undertake their own renovations.

On the narrow, steep parcel of land, Wanner reorganized the main rooms onto one level and expanded them outward to intimate courtyards and attractive outdoor grounds.

The long pool, whose surface exudes a wonderful sense of calm, lies under the roof terrace of his 35 square meter office.

Design classics like Mies van der Rohe’s Barcelona Chair, chairs and stools by Charles and Ray Eames, and the LC4 chaise lounge by Le Corbusier create strong accents. They are the constants - not just on the three floors. They will also play their crucial role in a city life that Danny-John Wanner can picture down the road after his current rural life, 25 minutes from downtown Basel.

The versatility and modularity of his USM sideboard fits perfectly into this concept of life. “The USM furniture has traveled with me since I was a student,” explains the architect. “I adapt and expand them depending on my living situation. And white has always been the right, timeless color.”

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