The story of an exceptional building

"Le paysage intérieur" is showing as from today. This movie, directed by Pierre Maillard, recounts the human and collective adventure of the building of the Rolex Learning Center over a three-year period.

In the beginning, there was just a field bordering a road. Three years later, on this same spot, one of the most exciting buildings in the world is there to welcome hundreds of students and visitors each day. The movie Le paysage intérieur, directed by Pierre Maillard and produced by CAB Productions, tells the story of the enormous collective enterprise behind the construction of the Rolex Learning Center between 2007 and 2010.

The movie – one hour and twenty-two minutes long – presents every aspect of this exceptional construction project: from its inception to its inauguration, including the architecture competition and the technical expertise deployed to bring dream to reality. However, beyond this feat of civil engineering, the film also reveals a genuine human adventure composed of hopes, hard work, personal commitment, the numerous dealings and negotiations, moments of joy, but also of doubts and tensions.

In the cast, we of course see the President of EPFL and initiator of the project, Patrick Aebischer, the architects Kazuyo Sejima and Ryue Nishizawa who designed this astonishing object with its fluid curves, and Eric Meino, project director at the building company Losinger. With his team, Meino had to invent new techniques and ways of working to meet the challenges presented by this project. However, one of the most important people in the film is without doubt Yumiko Yamada, the young American-Japanese architect charged with the task of monitoring the construction work and acting as the interface between the Japanese and Swiss companies.

The movie also pays homage to those who worked in the background, like Francis-Luc Perret, Vice-President of planning and logistics for EPFL, and certains “residents” of the building, such as David Aymonin, director of the Library, and Pierre Dillenbourg, Director of the Centre de recherche et appui pour la formation et ses technologies (CRAFT). Not forgetting the students, teachers, neighbors and the many workers who took part in the construction.

“Le paysage intérieur” is showing from today (in french), at 18:30 every day at the Cinétoile Malley Lumières theater in Prilly. Reduced entry at 12.- for students on presentation of their card.

Author: Sarah Perrin

Source: EPFL