Current Issue: Domus 1007

In this issue

Domus 1007

Cover: graphic elaboration of a sketch by Tullio Pericoli for the decoration of the Sala Garzanti, detail of the south-facing fanlight, 1988.

Editorial: If Rome isn’t Rome

What is happening today in the world, or to put it better, in this little-big world of ours? In one part of it we are still witnessing bloody wars and mass destruction, waged with a barbarity we had thought no longer possible. In another part, the most important contemporary democracy, that of America, has for months gripped the whole world with its embarrassingly unseemly electoral campaign. With potentially devastating effects on worldwide public opinion.

Domus 1000. Reiventing the present

My architect-designed furniture

In conjunction with a large exhibition at the Musée des Arts décoratifs in Paris on Jean Nouvel’s furnishing designs, the architect speaks to Domus about the important social role of design, stating that his “small pieces of architecture” have a rightful place in the design culture.


The basic training for students of architecture in the field of design is the focus of the dedicated didactic work carried out by Bearth in his second-year courses, which have been held for 16 years at the Mendrisio Academy of Architecture. Subdivided into two semesters, the courses examine both small-scale individual houses in natural settings as well as collective urban housing.

Yale School of Architecture

The first woman at the head of the prestigious School of Architecture, founded as an art school in 1832, initially run by Paul Rudolph and now “home” to the major names on the international scene, explains its mission: teaching future leaders to analyse and configure the built environment.

A permanent workshop of strategic urban design

At a time of great expectations for Italian cities, the Parma Città Futura team work – carried out by the architect Dario Costi with his students – offers new design strategies that can suggest necessary future transformations to the city, to be conducted in close collaboration between the university, administrations and inhabitants.

André Tavares: anatomy of the architectural book

André Tavares’ extensive research on the book collections of the Canadian Centre of Architecture in Montreal has spawned a richly illustrated publication that “dissects” the architectural book and analyses its construction process. The critic and architectural historian Jean-Louis Cohen describes it.

A way of working

From his first drawings for the cultural sections of newspapers to his clash with the art market and from his love of books to his favourite, unparalleled tool, the pencil – the great illustrator talks about his work and the painstaking research behind it.

Listening to light

Can music contribute to enhancing the meanings, the perception and the creation of architecture or a work of art? By examining space as a compositional element, the leader of the spectralists Gérard Grisey, a protagonist this autumn at the “Milano Musica” festival, offers a contemplation of the origin of light and sound.

Robert Venturi: complexity and contradiction

50 years on from the publication of the famous book by Roberto Venturi, the MAXXI is paying tribute to the American Maestro with three days of study dedicated to his work and the special relationship which tied him to the city of Rome. We asked Paolo Portoghesi for a personal account of the influence that this book has had on various generations of architects.

Musée Régional de la Narbonne Antique, France

For many years now, the design of museums as an opportunity for urban and cultural regeneration has been one of the most substantial themes in the architecture built by this British firm. This new archaeology museum, too, is aimed at becoming a catalyst for change in the fabric of a French city located in the region of Occitania.

Reconstruction: The aporia of living

Beginning with a number of reflections on the theme of living as expressed in ancient times by Sophocles in Antigone , the philosopher Pietro Montani invites us to consider two aspects in the process of the reconstruction of areas struck by earthquakes, which destroy the living spaces of numerous communities: memory and cooperative relationships.

National Taichung Theater, Taiwan

The interiors of the new opera house in the Taiwan city feature extraordinarily complex organic forms after the architects stepped away from linear geometry to conduct an unprecedented test of building rules lasting many years and generating huge spaces to precede the voices and sounds in three performance halls

IJhal, Amsterdam

The delicate task of enlarging Amsterdam’s 19th -century train station has been resolved by Wiel Arets Architects with a project that interprets the historic typology in a contemporary key, opens a direct connection with the IJ River and creates routes with a precise formal connotation for travellers.

Private studio, Berlin

The strong geometry found in the structure of a former boat-house from 1970 is appreciated in this conversion project for a lakeside studio surrounded by greenery. With its new facades in timber, glass and slim steel profiles, the pavilion is reminiscent of garden greenhouses from the past.

C Penthouse, Antwerp

The city loft designed by the Belgian architect – awarded with the title of “best designer of the year” at Interieur – is organised along perspective axes which exploit the spectacular view over the river Scheldt. The choice to leave unfinished and recycled materials, such as concrete and old timber planks, is a reference to the old warehouses of the river port and to the Arte Povera movement.

Utopian-technologist, artist-artisan

A perfectionist with a constant focus on the design’s content, Paolo Ulian remembers his early days in Enzo Mari’s Milan studio and admits that the start of a project is always the hardest time because once you have found its soul you have found everything. Treading the fine line between art and craft, utopia and technology, he adores experimenting, especially with marble which – he says – is in his DNA: from responsible applications to new approaches prompted by digital technology, its potential and its limits.

We work well together

Explaining to Domus the way they work, these two British designers begin with their collective memory, which they describe with great precision. After 20 years of partnership, they recognise the benefits of their architectural training: the ability to conceive and imagine projects in context, not in isolation, with a strong spatial character. They have done so since their fortunate introduction to the Italian design industry thanks to Giulio Cappellini right up to their latest complex product, a technical chair for Vitra.

Gianfranco Dioguardi’s Bari

Elzeviro: Living in the era of the multitudes

I see no great debate on the living of the many working in the gig economy or on re-designing the living spaces of the wretched multitudes. We must go beyond storytelling and the society of show and return to history with its long periods of meandering.

Rassegna: Outdoor