Current Issue: Domus 1004

Domus 1004

Cover: graphic interpretation of the cover design by Roberto Burle Marx for the magazine Rio, 1953. Gouache on paper, 33 x 28 cm. Sítio Roberto Burle Marx, Rio de Janeiro. © Sítio Roberto Burle Marx, Rio de Janeiro.

Editorial: If anyone can do anything

We often find ourselves thinking about the recent past, for the acknowledged purpose of identifying potentially helpful factors with which to analyse, interpret and better appreciate our present. Were we to now define what has most characterised this period, and if we may be forgiven such a bold question and its subsequent answer, we would venture to suggest that it has been a time of waiting.

Domus 1000. Many myriads of ideas

Roberto Burle Marx: Brasilian Modernist

On the occasion of the exhibition underway at the Jewish Museum in New York City, Kenneth Frampton gives an overview of this prolific landscape architect from São Paulo, whose 60-year career was entwined with that of the greatest architects of his times. His work marked a formal turning point in the art of gardens, and by being a committed horticulturalist and trailblazing ecologist, Burle Marx promoted an innovative botanical research centre dedicated to native Brazilian plants.


The city – both the historical and the contemporary – is at the centre of Inès Lamunière’s teaching at Lausanne’s École Polytechnique Fédérale. The themes of the “grand scale” and infrastructure run like a scarlet thread through her courses, allowing students to tackle cities as symbols of the past and present, with design taking on the task of transformation and modification, rather than construction.

Faculty of Architecture, University of Tokyo

Offering wide-ranging professional training which goes beyond traditional design fields is the strength of the teaching in this faculty – part of a university federation that includes a total of ten faculties, as well as graduate schools and research institutes. It is a vision that has led to a focus on the various problems presented by land use, and to an emphasis on computational and parametric design.

Arch and Art reloaded

To complete the Arch and Art initiative – and given our strong interest in the new generations – we have asked 15 students and one lecturer from Mendrisio Academy of Architecture to give their own personal interpretation of each pavilion and to transform the works formally using models.

Picturing the wait: waiting for the picture

With the great Neapolitan master’s home city holding his largest ever solo exhibition, we asked the philosopher Pietro Montani to look at the exhibition title, “Mimmo Jodice. Attesa 1960–2016”, and express his thoughts on the subject of the wait. Let it be our gift, philosopher permitting, to Mimmo.

Editions & Multiples

In a book due out shortly, Maurizio Nannucci gathers into a catalogue raisonné all the editions and multiples created by him since 1967. Below is a preview of the manifesto drawn up by the Florentine artist to codify and clarify this practice and development that have always been pivotal to his work.

My hermitage

In the simplicity and the solitude of a little pavilion of only seven square metres immersed in the Rhinebeck wilderness in the Hudson valley, the American architect has, for many years, found his ideal refuge, a place in which to create his beloved watercolours which have always accompanied him and where he can concentrate on his experimental activity.

OBRA Architects: SanHe kindergarten, Beijing

In the project for a large scholastic complex in a suburb of the Chinese capital, OBRA Architects has characterised the grand construction with domestic spaces which are more suited to the functionality of the building, at the same time experimenting with a configuration of the classrooms which is completely new to Chinese standards.

Eero Aarnio: The designer of colour and joy

The exhibition at the Designmuseo in Helsinki is the broadest review ever held on the work and ideas of the 83 year-old Finnish designer, who is internationally credited with having placed form at the service of imagination. The show aim is to reveal the breadth and profundity of Eero Aarnio’s way of working through the use of never-before-seen material from the archives of the studio and the original manufacturers.

The New Tate Modern, London

The completion of the Swiss office’s project for the London museum marks not only the conclusion of a task begun 20 years ago but also and primarily the accomplishment of a masterly work of architecture. Thanks to the guidance of an intelligent client and to the professional maturity of the architects, it manages to dig its roots deep into London’s urban fabric as a genuine piece of the contemporary city.

The New Tate Modern

The Feuerle Collection, Berlin

The powerful block of a bunker from World War II in a central area of the German capital became an opportunity to find a thread that would unite its architectural theme to modern art. The great thickness of the walls and ceilings, and the rhythmic repetition of the load-bearing structure were harnessed to create a project that tunes in to the sensorial experience of the visitor.

Lee Building for research and teaching, ETH Zürich

This exemplary project illustrates how a unitary design gesture can encapsulate functional, structural and urbanistic requirements all at once. In its building for the centre of Zurich, this young Swiss office interpreted the construction knowledge typical of the city’s polytechnic school.  

The nobility of the profession

Renaissance, as he likes to define himself, and mannerist by nature, Piero Lissoni speaks about his history and his approach to life and his profession. Empathic by vocation, he is able to communicate with entrepreneurs and clients from all over the world, often transforming the companies with which he works into leaders in their sector.

15. Venice Architecture Biennale. Reporting from the front

For our report on the 15th Venice Architecture Biennale, we approached seven leading architects from the middle-generation international scene for their opinions on what they had seen. The result provides a personal and highly diversified picture of the event. At the same time it presents a clear-cut and compact idea of what our profession represents today, as seen from its active practitioners.

Angelo Bucci’s São Paulo

Elzeviro: Living in exile

From exile was born a new idea of citizenship, no longer founded on acquired rights but on those to be acquired without distinction of language, sex, age, religion, ethnicity, provenance, or ideas. In the future, we will no longer live in a land but all in the same exile.

Rassegna: Design and sustainability