The regional city headquarters of the Zurich police force houses a fresco by Augusto Giacometti (1877-1947) that is one of the most important works of art and architecture in the city of Zurich.
When the former orphanage was converted into an administrative building in 1911, the basement was transformed into an entrance hall. In 1922, the city of Zurich launched a competition to decorate the entrance hall, aiming to brighten the gloomy space and to offer employment to the local artistic community. Augusto Giacometti won the competition hands down. His design in warm red and ochre tones was executed by the Giacometti himself and a number of other Zurich artists between 1922 and 1926, using the al fresco and al secco techniques. The paintings on the ceilings and vaulted roof consist of floral ornaments and geometric shapes, while the walls depict people at work: stone masons and carpenters represent handcrafts, while astronomers and magi represent science.
If you’d like to see the entrance hall to the police offices, known as the “Blüemlihalle” to the local populace, in all its glory, you can do so by presenting your ID at the entrance any day from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. and from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Extensively restored in 2019, this is a work of art and architecture of national significance.