“Today, in order to create a new architecture and new urban spaces, it is necessary to to begin further upstream: one has to plunge one’s hands into that vast planktonic soup of products, technologies, pictures, signs and data which make up the artificial universe in which man is completely immersed. It is an invasive and compromised artificial environment, but none the less it does constitue the only real urban space. Design, bravely operating within the world of production and consumption, has gained its new found supremacy through being the only planning entity able to transform reality.”
Source: Guy Keulemans
Meet Andrea Branzi, who in Italian would be defined as a Mostro Sacro (sacred monster) of Italian Architecture. His works are exposed in the main capitals of the world, he is an estimated professor of industrial design at the prestigious Politecnico in Milan, a man with a vision and with a strong personality, an architect od the future since his first works appeared to the public. No real presentation does him justice, his work speaks for himself.
The man behind the structure
Andrea Branzi was born in Florence in 1938. He graduated in architecture in 1966 with his project “Supermarket- Luna Park” (you can find a reproduction, namely “Luna Park II” (2001) at Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris) and has moved to Milan in 1973 where he has been working and living and where he is also teaching industrial design, focusing on his main areas of interest which are: industrial design, architecture, urban planning, and cultural promotion.
Among other incredibly notable details, Branzi is also the winner of two Golden Compass (in 1987 and 1995), the prestigious industrial design award, he co-founded Archizoom Associati (1966), where the”Superarchitecture” theory was developed by the free-thinkers firm based in Florence. Furthermore in 1983 Branzi was also one of the founders of ‘Domus Academy’, the first international post-graduate school of design. He collaborates with the top Design Magazines (Interni, Domus, Casabella) and was editor of Modo. In 2008 Andrea Branzi was also named an Honorary Royal Designer in the United Kingdom.
“I’ve always been inside this profile which corresponds to my personal attitudes,
that is I try to carry our designing as a form of reflection,
an evolved form of thought, also as a knowable category.
the core of my work is not architecture per se, a discipline per se,
I’m interested in architecture and the discipline because of its tight bond with knowledge.”
Superonda Comosable Sofa (1967)
Superonda is a sofa designed by Andrea Branzi in 1966 for Poltronova, as a member of Archizoom.
The wave-like form can be configurated in several ways – either a chaise longue, sofa or divan. It is a highly interactive design, functioning more as a plaything than as a serious seating solution. (Source: Designophy).
No Stop City (1969 – 1972)
Designed by Andrea Branzi, this work is a unique document, a political reflection on the urbanism and architecture that influenced a whole generation of architects from Rem Koolhaas and Frank O. Gehry to Daniel Libeskind, Bernard Tschumi and many others. The starting point of a new way of making architecture, No-Stop City, with its extremism, reconciles project and Utopia. (Source: Editions Hyx)
A project that was of great importance for me, but also for my generation,
for many artists that came afterwards was the ‘no stop city’ project.
a fluid metropolis, where even the concept of modernity within order changes,
towards an idea of uncontrollable complexity
and a world destined to a huge diversification.
today I see that this type of scenario is appreciated,
shared by famous contemporary architects who recognize
the radical movement and the ‘no stop city’ project to be a genetic event,
which intercepted a development in the culture of the project,
becoming an example within the project itself.
Revers Chair for Cassina (1993)
Weak Urbanization Philips Project Eindhoven city (2000)
A limited edition of 20 signed pieces by Andrea Branzi.
These are just a few examples of the incredible vision of this modern reformist architect. His revolutionary ideas have been the base of study for many more, and many have cited his work as unique and stimulating. His unique project of urban planning will be the base of more futuristic approaches, we are sure.
The man is not simply an architect, just like Leonardo was not just an artist, he has more levels to his introspective personality, a sight for what is needed, and an everlasting hope for human development.
“I have no fear for the future. the world, society has continued on positively
and in an extraordinary manner with respect to the mistaken predictions that were made.
then again in history one finds what one has inside.
I think that humans have a positive attitude. we’ll see what happens.”
Source and Documentation: Andrea Branzi Architetto