Current Issue: Domus 998

In this issue

Jannis Kounellis in his studio in Rome, 2015

Jannis Kounellis (1936–2017)

Remember Jannis Kounellis with a recent interview, where we are treated to an indomitable and potent cavalcade by one of the most prominent figures in contemporary art, who has always given priority to ethical and civil commitment over his work.

Domus 998

On the cover: graphic processing of a part of the study sketch for the Pietà Room by Adolfo Natalini for his design of the Grande Museo del Duomo in Florence © Adolfo Natalini

Editorial: What future for Italian architecture

Two recent exhibitions have drawn attention to Italian architecture in the second half of the past century: one at the MAXXI in Rome, and the other at the Milan Triennale. In Rome the process leading up to the institution of a national museum of architecture has reached its conclusion, with the opening of a permanent exhibition of material from its collections. In Milan the exhibition “Comunità Italia” illustrates Italian architecture from 1945 to 2000.

Twenty-three ways to be the other architect

Civil commitment has always inspired architects to tackle issues involving the contents of their craft, sometimes pushing them beyond its boundaries. This is the subject of a lengthy study that has led to a substantial catalogue and an exhibition currently underway in Montreal, a preview of which we publish here form he was.

The difficult craft of the architect

A conviction that architecture is entirely a matter of form and content is the basis of Beate Hølmebakk’s teaching at The Oslo School of Architecture and Design. Ideation, narration, context and form are the underlying theoretical principles of her curriculum, which aims to train future architects without jeopardising their individuality.

Faculdade de Arquitetura e Urbanismo, Universidade de São Paulo

By combining urban planning with architectural design, the Faculty of Architecture and Urbanism in São Paulo aims to shape interdisciplinary professionals able to tackle the requirements of architecture, urbanism and design. In its educational programme, practice and theory are not considered alternatively, but as the necessary building blocks of good training.

General – Practitioner

The think-tank that Renzo Piano set up in the space reserved for him as a senator for life is all contained in a single room occupied by a large round table and plain wooden panels leant against the walls. Here, working with young architects, he examines the suburbs of Italy with the idea of redeeming them from their real or imagined negativity and turning them into a positive motor of growth.

My magazines

Exponents of architectural culture in Italy have always used the magazine as a powerful means of developing and expressing their ideas regarding the discipline. The medium alternately embodied trends, avant-garde movements, counterculture and partisan ideas – not by illustrating design but by giving
it a backdrop. With this vivid chronicle by Alessandro Mendini, Domus embarks on a path leading to more firsthand accounts, to appreciate how a number
of maestri and protagonists worked with this concept.

With a steady hand and a confident heart

An exhibition and book by Silvana Annicchiarico give
attention to the extraordinary socio-ethno-anthropological exploration by an emblematic and international, yet little-known ceramicist, who in her exchange with local artisans and traditions has developed a contemporary new visual language.

The responsibilities of a graphic designer

In 1967, Giovanni Pintori gave a rare speech about the graphic designer’s duty to “strengthen certain indispensable foundations of clarity, taste and informational honesty”. We republish it here on the occasion of a new book, edited by Marta Sironi, the first overview of Pintori’s work for Olivetti.

Conservation is modern

The restoration work on Le Corbusier’s Cité de Refuge in Paris by the architect and head of Historic Monuments, François Chatillon, prompted him to reflect on the still relatively unexplored territory of the restoration of Modern architecture. We publish here an impassioned piece by him in which he hazards a clear and precise appeal to Vasari’s definition of necessity, convenience and pleasure: conservation is modern or, perhaps, one of the roads to modernity in the near future.

The Theatre of Architecture in Mendrisio, Switzerland

Here for Domus readers is an advance report on the Theatre of Architecture which Mario Botta is building in Mendrisio. Due to open to the public in 2017, the building will further enrich the Accademia di architettura with an impressive new cultural asset: a workshop of ideas, experimentation and events.

Zakka, or a small measure of happiness

Pondering the qualities that turn a common object into a fetishist icon, Naoto Fukasawa explores the origin and meaning of the zakka phenomenon – difficult to circumscribe, part consumer fad, part personal taste, but always good design – and gives Domus a preview of the contents of his upcoming exhibition.

Il Grande Museo del Duomo, Florence

The spectacular reconstruction and installation of the medieval facade of Santa Maria del Fiore with its original statues, set in the original position decided by Arnolfo di Cambio in his 13th-century design, makes the Sala del Paradiso the main feature of the new museum. In the unity of its formal quality, it configures a specific spatiality for each single exhibition area.

Residential complex, London

With a refined solution for split-level living quarters, these architects from London show how it is still possible to design “other” residential spaces. A fresh interpretation of the traditional British terrace house offers a new landscape of interiors.

Lounges for Qatar Airways, Hamad International Airport, Doha, Qatar

This Milanese office responded to a challenging programme requiring the design over 50,000 square metres’ worth of prestigious hospitality facilities for Qatar’s flag carrier with an architectural project that generates a micro-city inside the megastructure of a terminal.

Design that aims for concrete answers

From her studies under Jonathan De Pas, her stint with Andrea Branzi, to her work in Milan and Paris, Donata Paruccini tells Domus how her career is unfolding as an intense voyage peppered with challenges, where each project is an attempt to explore new roads and offer concrete answers to specific questions. Her recent debut in teaching has convinced her of schools’ delicate yet crucial duty to educate students in the culture of design.

Jannis Kounellis

Exactly sixty years since he arrived in Italy, we went to his Rome studio to meet the master, who graciously tells Domus readers here how he has spent these decades. We are treated to an indomitable and potent cavalcade by one of the most prominent figures in contemporary art, who has always given priority to ethical and civil commitment over his work; the portrait of a man who has made his Greek origins and Rome the platform from which to watch and travel around the world. With an art that stoops to no compromises and nails us all to our own responsibilities.

Rassegna: Interior decoration

Feedback: András Pálffy’s Vienna

Elzeviro: Houses with cracks

At a time when everything, really everything if it exists has to be recognised in its utility, to walk among remnants of the world, among things that have lost their purpose and are still there, asking for nothing, becomes an act of resistance.