When the engineer Paul Schärer, owner of USM U. Schärer Söhne AG, and the Solothurn-based architect Fritz Haller, researcher and pioneer of modular construction systems, met in the technology and progress-friendly 1960s, a creative cooperation was born that would soon make history in the Swiss architecture and design industry. Together, they developed the three building block and installation systems MINI, MIDI, MAXI as well as USM Modular Furniture Haller, which has featured in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art in New York since 2001.
Schärer, who held both Mies van der Rohe and Le Corbusier in great esteem, joined the long tradition of developers who appreciated and supported modern industrial architecture. Haller therefore built the company building (1963) and office pavilion (1965) on the USM site in Münsingen, followed by the Schärer family’s private residence on a steep slope with spectacular views all round. This is known by everyone as the “Buchli”, short and sweet, after the property’s field name.
The Schärer family recently completed a meticulous complete renovation of their former residence, while still maintaining the original construction principles and appearance as well as strictly complying with historic preservation guidelines.