Cover: plan of a structural column of the Tugendhat house built by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe in Brno, Czech Republic, 1930. This design forms the base of the Tugendhat house logo.
Editorial: If Milan could regain its former self
After the summer break, we are starting up again from where we left off in July, with an invitation to work on the construction of a fresh start with the capacity to overcome once and for all a hefty chunk of our recent past. This is precisely from whence we wish to start, placing emphasis on the urgent need to identify, express and pursue the terms of this resolution to be implemented as soon as possible, quickly, because our contemporaneity is very complicated.
Enriched by the masterful display designed by Francesco Venezia to interpret the memory of myths and the artistic reality of masterpieces from classical antiquity, the exhibition “Mito e Natura” is an unusual voyage into a central but little-known theme in the ancient world: the figurative representation of the world around us.
The seventh room
Design and theory
Four designs developed by students of the Bauhaus-Universität Weimar illustrate Karl-Heinz Schmitz’s approach to the building type of the skyscraper. His course studies the themes of integrating the new into the urban context, and the public functions inside the buildings themselves.
Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design, London
Formed 26 years ago by uniting two art and design schools, Central Saint Martins College gathered all its disciplines under one roof in 2011. The energy of this important centre of education is being turned outward to society by making crafts, technology and critical thinking take on a cultural and political role.
At the helm of the family business for 30 years now, the managing director of Rimadesio gives Domus an overview of the steps that brought him to reach an elevated level of manufacturing quality with his products. His story is a mixture of awareness and pride, where a sense of belonging to the Brianza region allows the company and its employees to rise to the challenge of ever more ambitious new objectives.
Stories by my pencil
The main instrument of his art, the pencil, has become the undisputed protagonist of the latest book by this maestro from the Marche region, sampled here for our readers. The story is about a line, and it brings to mind the lines of Piero Manzoni, published in one of our recent Domus issues.
Design is experimentation through form
The work of this Lebanese designer is the fruit of constant interaction with craftspeople and the continuous search for a unifying order. In pursuit of an indistinct, perhaps unachievable finality, her objects, suspended between art and design, feed off one another and are in perpetual transition.
Survival through design
When he published this strong theoretical treatise in 1954, now reprinted in Italian by Edizioni di Comunità, the great American master, who is known throughout the world for his extraordinary buildings, anticipated the most important themes of contemporary debate by over half a century.
The apple and the leaf
Referring to his visit to a recent house by Valerio Olgiati in Portugal and the work of Christian Kerez in Switzerland, the Spanish architect Alberto Campo Baeza offers Domus readers a clear and accurate consideration on the use of structures, and he concludes that there is not one overriding truth in architecture.
A new public space for Brig
His recent project for the city of Brig was an opportunity for this Swiss master to remember the only speech he ever wrote, the one he held at the Lausanne Polytechnic in 1984, which offers an important lesson in coherence, ethics and political convictions that still holds water after all those years.
University, architecture and historic city
The creation of a permanent platform to study historic cities was the aim of the fifth edition of a master’s degree course in architecture, organised by the University of Naples Federico II and our magazine in collaboration with seven of the best architecture schools in Europe.
Industrial complex, Valvigna, Italy
The most recent and largest factory designed by Guido Canali for Prada is laid out as something more complex and diversified than a mere manufacturing plant. It aspires to create a place that represents the most authentic spirit of the Italian brand in the context of a highly developed area lying along Italy’s longest motorway.
Guido Canali and Prada
When a client like Prada meets an architect like Guido Canali, it can be the beginning of a long string of reciprocal discovery and successful projects. Twenty-one years and three built designs led to the creation of an innovative type of garden factory with admirable qualities.
The new Darsena, Milan
The project that has transformed the abandoned area of the Darsena into a new metropolitan public area is the fruit of a lengthy gestation period. Old and new parts are melded into a unitary setting of extraordinary civic importance for the city. Through the preservation and rebuilding of the 16th-century walls, a new connection between the quays was designed, with walkways, terraces, stairs and ramps.
More content than form
With his second project for Arper, this French designer has developed a rational and refined system that avoids the traditional upholstery method of sewing, by simply eliminating it. The result is the Steeve collection, with strong tectonic forms that are surprisingly light and somehow timeless.
Design as an instrument of progress
He grew up with the freedom of thought transmitted by his country of origin, Argentina. This was then shaped by the approach to work that he found in Milan, his home since 1998. Gomez-Paz has developed his own design method, where form is always the result of careful consideration. Sketching in his notebook forms the instrumental departure point of all his projects, after which comes the phase of physical verification by means of the materials in his workshop, arriving only after a long process at a defined form.
Tugendhat House, Brno, Czech Republic
Thirty years after publishing an important restoration of this masterpiece by the German maestro Mies van der Rohe, Domus is again turning its attention to the Tugendhat house. An extraordinary, recently completed renovation has seen close collaboration at the highest level between Czech institutions and a number of scholars, architects and specialised craftspeople to bring this magnificent piece of architecture back to its original splendour.
Feedback: Jean-Pierre de la Porte’s Johannesburg
Elzeviro: The Function of Paris
Paris does a little of everything. Not that Paris has no specialty or particular quality; but it is of a more subtle order, and the function which it alone possesses is more difficult to define than that of other cities.