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  5. GG-loop
  6. 2015
  7. Gentle Genius / GG-loop

Gentle Genius / GG-loop

  • 20:00 - 21 January, 2016
Gentle Genius / GG-loop
Gentle Genius / GG-loop, © Michael Sieber
© Michael Sieber

© Michael Sieber © Michael Sieber © Michael Sieber © Michael Sieber +17

  • Program

    facade refurbishment, energy saving technology
  • Area

    230 sqm facade
  • Main contractor/builder

    Impresa Cannito Domenico
  • Steel work

    Saverio Petronella
  • Main supplier

    Mapei S.p.A.
  • Building material supplier

    Fassa Bortolo S.p.A.
  • More SpecsLess Specs
© Michael Sieber
© Michael Sieber

“The design process for my family’s house started following an intuition, that developed over time taking the form we can see now. During the evolution of the project a transformation, like the renewal of the king, has occurred in me. One of the major catalysts has been the album “In the Court of the Crimson King” by King Crimson, inhabiting my subconsciousness unraveling itself through catharsis in this project.


At the beginning I imagined to restore the building giving it a coherent fortress-like look again. Whilst the tower took shape in my imagination, a castle emerged in which the King had trapped himself, overwhelmed by his fears, his dark side, prone to decay and death, the Nigredo. The court where tension, resignation and sacrifice evolved into hope, rebirth, the project itself. ”

© Michael Sieber
© Michael Sieber

The city and its various parts can be seen as a music score, the edifices acting as notes played by different instruments simultaneously. A melody is created by, what the Romans used to call Genius Loci, the spirit of the place, the conductor of the city. Historic centres usually have a clear, harmonious melody, but oftentimes the soundscapes of the outer layers of a city are disrupted, lacking a conductor able to integrate architectonic interventions throughout space and time. Notes follow each other without a scheme, unbalanced, generating feelings of abandon and indifference.


Gentle Genius is born in such an environment, aiming to generate awareness of the critical current condition. It sets a new key in the urban music score, recovering a deep note lost in time, reinventing local instruments to manifest as a sound from the future, allowing the Genius Loci to compose new music again.

© Michael Sieber
© Michael Sieber

The Genius Loci of the area, after decades of abandon, has finally arisen from its sleep. The facade starts to vibrate and due to its structure creates an ever moving surface. The red represents the strength of the genius. Red has the longest wave length of the visible spectrum and can be associated with the longest sound-waves that, rather than touching our ears, are felt in the torso. Hence it touches the instincts of the viewer, it is not linear, it is multifaceted perception that reaches out from the walls, transforming a residential building into a sculpture. The dormant feelings in the subconscious of the viewer are awakened and stirred, augmenting the intensity of the predominant emotion, acting like a mirror. The spirit has found a place to emerge again, he shakes and touches those that are outside and protects and shelters those that have welcomed him.

© Michael Sieber
© Michael Sieber
Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address. Cite: "Gentle Genius / GG-loop" 21 Jan 2016. ArchDaily. Accessed . <>
Read comments


ABruce · January 22, 2016

The face only a mother could love...

Tomislav Perkovic · January 22, 2016

I have a question to architect.

Genius loci means "spirt of a place". What mutual spirit/spirit of place have 70.000 people town in south Italy with London rock band from 1970s?

Also it would be very interesting to read explanation of future archaeologist (lets say) in year 12016 after they excavate ruins of a ancient town of Altamura - why this building looks in a way it looks?! Explanation would be also on a shaky legs like this one - King Crimson what?!

As I understand latin Altamura means - old wals. For me old wals are genius loci of that place.

Sherlock Holmes · January 22, 2016 02:28 PM

As far as I remember my Latin: Alta mura means high walls. Maybe your knowledge of German misguided you.

Croco Dile · January 22, 2016

This is much better than the old.
Even though the justification for it is a bit strange.

Architectural savage · January 22, 2016

Dear GG-loop,
Did you write a fairytale for children ? Just say I wanted to do a red facade with a strage shape. Btw Keep trying but stop using dope. Cheers

Conor Austin Jesse Sass · January 22, 2016

Maybe I'm missing a connection here, but how is "In the Court of the Crimson King" related in any way with the project before they decided to use that as inspiration? Or did he just pull some epic story line from his head and said, "oh hey, I'm gonna design this project our office just got around this sweet album I'm listening to, just 'cause its been on my mind."

Or is that all just post-justification BS? If so, instead just say "I dunno, but it looks cool, don't it?"


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© Michael Sieber

老城区中的新核心 / GG-loop