IULM_Milan / 5+1AA Alfonso Femia Gianluca Peluffo

© Ernesta Caviola

Architects: 5+1AA Alfonso Femia Gianluca Peluffo
Location: ,
Architect In Charge: Alfonso Femia, Gianluca Peluffo, Alessandro Schiesaro
High Supervision: Cesare Stevan, Angelo Bugatti
Desing Team: Gabriele Pulselli, Raffaella F. Pirrello, Daniele Marchetti, Domenica Laface, Alessandro Bellus, Lorenza Barabino, Luca Pozzi, Simonetta Cenci
Area: 23261.0 sqm
Year: 2014
Photographs: Ernesta Caviola

Milan Expo 2015: Vo Trong Nghia’s Lotus-Inspired Vietnamese Pavilion

Courtesy of Vo Trong Nghia Architects

Vo Trong Nghia has unveiled designs for the Vietnamese pavilion at the 2015 Milan Expo. Inspired by the lotus, the pavilion features a number of bamboo clad, umbrella-like structures supporting trees above a pool of water, in a composition reminiscent of their Kontum Indochine Cafe.

“The Lotus is ’s national flower, a symbol of purity, commitment and optimism for the future,” say the architects. “Growing from the muddy ponds it rises above the surface to bloom with remarkable beauty. The flower is proof that patience can turn difficulties into advantages.”

SALES ODDITY by Andrés Jaque, Silver Lion for Research at the Venice Biennale

By the late 1960s, two dynamics were shaping a new urban reality in Italy: on the one hand, TV was heavily influencing Italian society, becoming an intrinsic part of daily life; on the other, the social tension resulting from student protests and accelerated immigration had begun to impact cities in a chaotic way. These dynamics paved the way for Milano Due, a new town on the outskirts of Milan, which promised a new, idyllic type of urbanism.

The complex, although traditional in appearance with its red pitched roofs, put into practice modern concepts: its 2,600 apartments, which had access to amenities for education and entertainment, were arranged around a giant artificial garden/lake and were connected via an elevated circulation system. Below ground, the complex housed the studios of the first private TV channel in Italy, a fact that would shape the lives of the inhabitants of Milano Due and eventually all of Italian society.

This interesting urban phenomena is analyzed by Andrés Jaque / Office for Political Innovation in “SALES ODDITY: Milano 2 and the Politics of Direct-to-Home TV Urbanism,” a project that was part of the Monditalia section at the Venice Biennale and was awarded the Silver Lion for the Best Research Project. According to the jury “The project presents critically a fundamental aspect of modern societies: how the power of media occupies other social spaces, both physically and politically. It is based on innovative research combining surveys and interviews with planners and residents and re-appropriation of the mass media language. While based on an Italian case, this issue is present in many international contexts dominated by contemporary technological and neo-liberal cultures.”

Dossier, trailer, and more photos of the project by Miguel de Guzmán, after the break:

SALES ODDITY. Milano 2 and the Politics of Direct-to-Home TV Urbanism
by Andrés Jaque / Office for Political Innovation

Nestlé Headquarters / Park Associati

© Andrea Martiradonna

Architects: Park Associati
Location: Via del Bosco Rinnovato, ,
Architect In Charge: Filippo Pagliani, Michele Rossi
Area: 34,092 sqm
Year: 2014
Photographs: Andrea Martiradonna, Simone Simone

Milan Expo 2015: Libeskind Reimagines the Chinese “Shitang” for Vanke

© Vingtsix; Courtesy of Studio

Daniel Libeskind has unveiled designs for Vanke’s first ever overseas pavilion for the 2015 Milan Expo. Clad in a self-cleaning, air purifying, metalized tile, which was designed by Libeskind in collaboration with the Italian company Casalgrande Padan, the “red serpentine-like” structure reinterprets the traditional Chinese Shitang (dining hall).

Milan Expo 2015: Nemesi & Partners Reveal Smog-Eating Pavilion for Italy

Main Entrance. Image © Nemesi & Partners

Roma-based Nemesi & Partners has designed a 13,000 square meter “urban forest” that will serve as the Italian Pavilion at the 2015 Milan Expo. Enveloped within an intricate, branch-like skin, the six-story lattice structure will be made from 900 panels of “i.active BIODYNAMIC” cement that will “capture” air pollutants and convert them into inert salts.

Milan Expo 2015: Austria’s Winning Pavilion to Simulate Native Climate

Exterior View. Image © team.breathe.

The winning design for the Austrian pavilion of the 2015 Milan Expo has been announced. Following the Expo’s theme of “Energy for Life,” team.breathe.austria’s winning proposal focuses on social change for environmental protection. The enclosed, rectangular pavilion will be planted with an abundance of native Austrian vegetation. Titled “breathe,” the project will produce enough oxygen to sustain 18,000 people by the hour and advocates for a healthier bond between the urban and natural environment.

Milan Expo 2015: OBA Unveils Designs for Thai Pavilion

© OBA

The honor of designing Thailand’s pavilion for the 2015 Milan Exposition has officially been awarded to The Office of Bangkok Architects (OBA). The firm’s winning design incorporates the Expo’s theme of “Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life” with the agrarian and religious qualities that define the Kingdom of Thailand. Located centrally on the Expo’s main avenue, the pavilion will be adjacent to a canal that will be used as a part of the , relating back to Bangkok’s informal title as the “Venice of Asia.”

Milan Expo 2015: X-TU Designs Latticed “Fertile Market” for French Pavilion

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Paris-based X-TU has envisioned a more cohesive, sustainable market where food is not only grown and harvested, but sold and consumed on the spot. Serving as the French pavilion for the 2015 Milan Expo, X-TU’s competition-winning scheme will celebrate the country’s “rich genetic heritage” and future in innovative food production with a timber “fertile market” that supports the growth of the produce it sells.

QKING / Modourbano Architettura

© Simone Bossi

Architects: Modourbano Architettura
Location: Via Giuseppe Tartini, Milan,
Year: 2014
Photographs: Simone Bossi

Competition Entry: Romanian Pavilion (Milan Expo 2015) / Collective East Architects

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Placing sixth in the competition to design the Romanian Pavilion for the 2015 Milan Expo, Collective East Architects offered a “simple and powerful landmark” that focuses on the history of Romania’s agriculture. Serving as an “attractor and orientation mark,” the structure was conceived by repeating a traditional Romanian pattern that “transformed the pavilion into a sculptural object with a powerful national identify.” From a distance, the facade appears “introverted and impenetrable;” as viewers move closer, the building begins to expose its contents, revealing a level of detail one would expect in a “jewelry museum.”  

MVRDV Exhibits Furniture Series “Vertical Village” at Milan Design Week

Vertical Village in . Image © Gili Merin

, in cooperation with the Belgian furniture label Sixinch, have designed a playful furniture series that imagines an antidote to the sprawled, generic urban growth of East Asia’s mega-cities. Each of the 77 large cushions in “Vertical Village” – currently on display at Milan’s Design Week – take the form of small, densely-packed houses, colorful alternatives to the horizontal, block-like residential buildings that currently dot East Asia’s skylines. From the exhibition:

“The Vertical Village – observation of the uncontrolled growth of Asian cities, which has lead to the disappearance of urban villages on a human scale, prompts the designers to develop a livable city model that promotes upward growth: a vertical village composed of small residential nuclei that ensure human relationships and, at the same time, leave room for green areas and gathering places. The installation is composed of 77 large cushions in the form of small houses, all different.”

Learning Center FLA / Studio Marinoni

© Giovanni Chiaramonte

Architects: Studio Marinoni
Location: Corso Sempione, 36, 20154 ,
Year: 2012
Photographs: Giovanni Chiaramonte

Competition Entry: Austrian Pavilion (Milan Expo 2015) / Paolo Venturella

© wemage, Courtesy of

Placing fifth in the international competition to design the Austrian Pavilion for the 2015 Milan Expo, Paolo Venturella’s concept is designed as an extruded version of the Austrian mountain house that connects two major programs: an exhibition space and “big green-house.” To the north, the elevated exhibition space is shielded by a fabric sheathing which diminishes as it moves towards the greenhouse, south, where visitors are presented with a fresh vegetable garden, bar and restaurant that serves traditional cuisine. 

White Wave / Piuarch

Courtesy of Piuarch

Architects: Piuarch
Location: ,
Architect In Charge: Francesco Fresa, Germán Fuenmayor, Gino Garbellini and Monica Tricario
Area: 22500.0 sqm
Year: 2013
Photographs: Courtesy of Piuarch

Milan Expo 2015: Tsinghua University with Studio Link-Arc to Design China Pavilion

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Tsinghua University, alongside New York-based Studio Link-Arc, has been announced as winners of a competition to design the Chinese Pavilion at the 2015 Expo. Expanding on the Expo’s overarching theme, “Feeding the Planet – Energy for Life,” the pavilion’s “Land of Hope” is centered on the idea that “hope can be realized when nature and the city exist in harmony.”

Milan Expo 2015: Eight Teams Shortlisted to Design UK Pavilion

Site, prior to construction

Eight multidisciplinary teams have been selected to move forward in the second stage of competition to design the Pavilion for the 2015 Milan Expo. Drawing inspiration from the theme “Grown in Britain: Shared Globally,” the teams will now envision proposals that showcase Britain’s contribution in research, innovation and entrepreneurship to the global challenges addressed by the overarching exposition theme, “Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life.” Presentations will commence mid-April and a winner will be announced in May. View the selected teams, after the break.

Inside the Homes of Eight Famous Architects

Shigeru Ban’s Tokyo house. Image © Hiroyuki Hirai

Originally published in Metropolis Magazine as “Inside the Homes and Workspaces of 8 Great Architects“, this article shows the spaces occupied by some of the best-known architects in the world. Documented for an that will be featured at the Milan Design Week 2014, the images give a glimpse inside the private worlds of some of our favorite designers.

It’s a cliche that architects have messy workspaces. From chaos comes creation, so the phrase goes. But an upcoming exhibition at this year’s Salone del Mobile intends to dispel the myth. Where Architects Live will present glimpses into the personal spaces of eight significant architects: Shigeru Ban, Mario Bellini, David Chipperfield, Massimiliano and Doriana Fuksas, Zaha Hadid, Marcio Kogan, Daniel Libeskind and Bijoy Jain of Studio Mumbai.

Curator Francesca Molteni interviewed each of the designers in their private homes and came away with one finding: architects are actually quite tidy. The studios are all pristinely ordered; books are neatly stowed away, figurines and objets astutely displayed, and table tops swept clean. The photographs below are part of the exhibition materials, produced with the help of scenographer Davide Pizzigoni, which faithfully document the physical environments in images, video, and audio. These will be used to recreate the architects’ “rooms” at Salone del Mobile in April.

Where Architects Live is not limited to satisfying our curiosity about what these architects’ homes look like. Richard Rogers’ affirmation that “a room is the beginning of a city” resonates with the project’s aim in trying to articulate its subjects’ personal tastes and obsessions, and how those are reflected in their architectural work.

Read on to see more images of the inside of architects’ homes and studios