Inspired by the cultural heritage of the Canton Jura, Julien Rondez has created an architectural grammar of a Swiss cultural landscape pars pro toto. His abstract depiction of local church-towers represents not only the unique scenery in the center of Europe, but also captures the fundamental and meaningful details of collective memories. Rondez portrays historical landmarks of architecture—alongside contemporary instances—in a coherent and harmonious manner. He succeeds in applying consistent rules of abstraction to implement a syntactic visual grammar, which he then precisely executes. Rondez instigated an investigation of a meaningful aspect of his identity and used his skills as a communication designer to share his findings. Each of the forty-five symbols tells an individual story, while in their entirety they create a diorama of a region. For local residents, his work incorporates personal narratives as well as their shared identity. It invites them to embrace their community and home. For non-locals, the project celebrates local heritage and the diversity of regional architecture. It invites us to think about our own heritage and maybe inspires us to find our own ways of preserving and documenting this heritage.
Project description by the author
In the north of Switzerland, the canton of Jura is in a rural area, dominated by nature, with a lot of small villages. Each village has its own bell tower that is visible throughout the village. Each bell tower has a distinct architecture known to all the inhabitants of that village as this architecture represents the identity of the village. This work gives an overview of the whole of Jura, and represents the diversity of churches in Jura. The name of each symbol is the name of the inhabitants of the village, which also serve as identifying factors.
Julien Rondez is a Swiss graphic designer. He studied at Schule für Gestaltung Basel from 2014 to 2015 and is currently enrolled at the Institute of Visual Communications, Academy of Art and Design Basel. He has worked for various organizations as a graphic designer and loves his job!