The Swiss architect and designer Mario Botta served an apprenticeship in technical drawing between 1958 and 1961 in the architecture practice Carloni and Camenisch in Lugano. Afterwards Mario Botta attended art school (1961-64) in Milan before studying architecture at Venice University between 1964 and 1969.
In 1970 Mario Botta opened an architecture practice in Lugano. Mario Botta is acclaimed worldwide for the numerous private houses and company buildings he designed in Switzerland and Italy. Among Mario Botta's most important public buildings are the Cathedral at Evry (1988-90), the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (1990-95), and the Tinguely Museum in Basel (1995-96). As an architect, Mario Botta is a leading exponent of what is known as the Ticino School.
From 1982 Mario Botta also worked as a designer, primarily of furniture and lighting. For the Italian furniture company Alias, Mario Botta designed the chairs "Prima" and "Seconda", the "Terzo" chair, "Quarto", a piece of seat furniture weighing 23 kilos; they were followed by the "Quinta" chair (1986), and the sofa "Sesto: Re e Regina", "Vis à vis", a sofa with a frame of steel tubing, and the "Latonda" chair.
Clear, reduced geometric forms and the use of steel tubing, especially in the chairs he designed, reveal Mario Botta's close affinities with the Bauhaus tradition. For Artemide Mario Botta designed several lamps, including "Shogun" (1986), which was available as both a table lamp and a floor lamp; "Fidia" wall lighting; "Melanos", a table lamp; and "Zefiro" ceiling lighting. In 2000 Mario Botta designed the caraffes "Tua" and "Mia" for Alessi as well as the "Tronco" vase in 2002.
Mario Botta has published numerous books and monographs. In 1996 Botta founded the Accademia di Architettura Svizzera.