WHAT IS A HOUSE FOR住宅所为何

Federico Rossi, Francesca Gagliardi (Fondamenta): We found out about Luigi Moretti through Spazio, the architectural magazine he founded during the 1950s. Moretti was a great connoisseur of Michelangelo and Borromini who studied and reworked the Baroque in his own way, for the modern era. His buildings are full of metaphors, analogies and references and the more we study his writings and his architecture, the more we understand the complexity and importance of his work. There is not a lot written on La Saracena and when we first visited the house four years ago, we found it in a state of degradation. Fortunately, last year we had the opportunity to go back to Santa Marinella and see the house after its complete restoration.

FROM OUTSIDE, THE HOUSE HAS A CHARACTER AKIN TO A PUBLIC BUILDING OR POSSIBLY EVEN A CHURCH AND UPON ENTERING, FEELS MORE LIKE AN INSTITUTIONAL PROMENADE THAN A HOME. GIVEN THESE SENTIMENTS, FOR YOU, WHAT MAKES IT A HOUSE?

The domesticity of this house is given by the way the spaces are related to each other, passing smoothly from a monumental scale to measures deeply related to the human body. 

There are several similarities between, for instance Le Corbusier’s Ronchamp Chapel and La Saracena. The surprising structure, the primordial heaviness and the thick, rough type of plaster are definitely present in both. What’s more, at no point are you able to see into the buildings before entering and, at least from the outside, both are a composition of volumes.

What’s relevant in La Saracena is how these themes somehow protect and emphasise the human scale. A good example of this contradiction is the entrance, marked by a large mass that hovers above the front door. Thanks to the complete lack of any dimensional reference, the fact that it is actually the thin parapet of the above terrace is totally concealed.

The promenade, considered monumental at the first glance, connects many small moments: places where you can either eat, sit at a fireplace, or simply stroll. Taken individually, these areas are very welcoming and dense. The living room - even though it is enhanced by the external wooden roof projected towards the sea, in reality, in spite of its exposure it keeps a domestic scale.

Compared to architects like John Lautner, who takes tectonics and the difference between the individual parts of a building to a limit, Moretti does not try to be spectacular. He manages to compress and decompress spaces in a very natural way. In La Saracena the complexity arises exactly from highly targeted and well-proportioned solutions. And this is something extremely beautiful.

LA SARACENA IS MADE UP OF DIFFERENT SHAPES AND GEOMETRIES. WHAT POTENTIAL DOES THE USE OF THIS COMBINATION OF SHAPES, STRAIGHT LINES, AND CURVED LINES HAVE?

As far as we are concerned it is very difficult to explain it rationally. I don’t know what the meaning of this mixture of forms is, but we are profoundly attracted to them. One explanation would be that, Moretti often took direct references from other fields. Lucio Fontana and Caravaggio for instance reoccur very often in his work. The latter, in his paintings marked the moment of maximum tension of a scene through contrasting light. 

Moretti takes this theme and translates it in his architecture using it in various ways to reach the same effect. There are many cuts in La Saracena that open unexpected glimpses. However, despite this fragmentation, when inside everything makes sense. It seems that he was very adept at conceiving and breaking systems. He both manipulated and deconstructed the principles he created at the same time. Although he was a mathematical connoisseur, he was not satisfied with mathematical schemes. That is why, there is no rational way of learning something from his approach. It might be that it needs to remain at the level of intuition. Paolo Portoghesi, for instance started from the same references, but he somehow got stuck in forms, in contrast to Moretti who managed to remain free.

La Saracena is a building that needs to be experienced in motion. It has more to do with kinetic sequences than static images or formulas. However, we are attracted not only by movement within this house, but by the very fact that through moving you experience totally different situations. If you cannot visit La Saracena, you only need to look at the section - to see the interplay of different spaces and understand much more than the floor plan reveals.

IS THERE SOMETHING THAT NEEDS TO BE UNDERSTOOD IN ORDER TO APPRECIATE LA SARACENA?

If you take the de-constructivists for example, they also mix forms and geometries, but their experiments have often no relation to human scale and human activities. They are just academic exercises. La Saracena is not an exercise. This house brings abstract concepts to the extreme but with the human figure in constant focus. It makes a big difference. 

Moretti studied the issue of human scale in a coherent and profound way. The analytic models of the Michelangelo’s and Borromini’s buildings that Moretti constructed and published in Spazio, were aimed at understanding the relationship between you, the void and the building.

Another topic would be contradiction, something that is evident in most of Moretti’s buildings. It is also very important for us in our own practice, and we are constantly asking ourselves how to unite elements from different families. Some architecture attempts to do it through materiality. In contrast, Moretti never talked about physical matter, his buildings are too abstract to do so, instead he used light. Solely through the modulation of light and shadow, he was able to manage the co-existence of both pure spaces and absolute tectonic systems, which had the effect of merging many individual, distinct realms into one.

It is an example of what we try to do: we research precise moments for which it is difficult to give a rational explanation of what is happening. We also use rigid principles, often strongly related to structural themes, but the magic happens when we manage to break free from them – letting in surrealism.

ARE THERE ANY DETAILS THAT DRAW PARTICULAR ATTENTION?

Yes. The house is directed towards the sea and, yet despite this, it’s not actually the main idea. In reality the main theme is your relationship to the wider context and not specifically „the sea” or „the house”. The horizon and the waves are treated as part of the context, not as an absolute protagonist.

At the end of the promenade to the sea there is a point where you find a cut running from the ground to the ceiling in the wall facing the garden. That incidental cut makes you turn your back and face a new and secret view of the garden. Light enters the scene between two beams that almost touch each other. It’s a moment of extreme complexity where you are able to simultanously see four different parts of a system that you were not previously conscious of. The light allows you to understand where you are, what you can see, and creates an unexpected break in the experience of the house. This detail is not necessary for the house to work well but, when you are there you perceive the strong impact it generates on the space. Incredibly, it does not break the perception of the continuity of the wall but when you pass from one space to another, thanks to the change of light, you really feel its presence.

MORETTI UNDERLINED IN HIS WRITINGS THAT AN IMPORTANT QUALITY HE STROVE FOR WAS A SENSE OF ADVENTURE. CAN A SENSE OF ADVENTURE EXIST IN TODAY’S ARCHITECTURE AND IF SO, ARE THE ELEMENTS CURRENT 50 YEARS AGO STILL INTERESTING?

In our office, at the moment, we are mainly working on private houses. What we have noticed is that adventure is not strongly linked to an era but, in the case of a house, it is more tied to the lived experience of an architect. A house has no time, it is linked to the values of those who commission and design it are striving for. 

Would it make sense to conceive La Saracena today? Could we use Moretti’s ideas on adventure, in overcoming our limits? Yes. Moretti’s ideas and intentions behind how to live in this villa are still extremely appealing. We find his research on adventure universal and still valid today.

50 years ago, perhaps society was more cultured, with more characters similar to Moretti, who at the age of 23 wrote his first text on Borromini. There was a deeper curiosity and attention given to culture. Nowadays, in a less involved and more utilitarian society, it is more difficult to apply adventurous ideas to projects.  

ARE THERE MORE ECONOMIC OR CULTURAL CRITERIA THAT MAKE IT DIFFICULT?

Time, unlike money, is a variable that is difficult to negotiate today. From our experience - the higher the budget, the shorter the time. The opposite of what you would logically expect. However, even today a private house remains a fertile ground to research themes with a great degree of freedom. A single-family house is the main topic of architecture. It is where an architect always has an opportunity to push his or her language radically, whatever it may be. Functionality in a house is a completely subjective topic. Negotiation with the client on what it means to live in a domestic sphere is part of the success. The ability of an architect is also to educate a client that a 300 m2 promenade can be a living room and not a useless space. Each time we start a project for a house, we accept the program and the budget, but we refuse to accept that a client already knows how he or she wants to live. We believe architects have the responsibility to decide what it means to live in a building and for the sake of the project, a client needs to engage with this belief and be open to the results. Moretti had great skill in engaging his clients and bringing forward radical ideas of living.

15.07.2020

弗朗切茜卡·加利亚里迪和费德里科·罗西(基础事务所):我们是通过他在1950年代创办的建筑杂志《空间》(Spazio)了解到路易吉·莫雷蒂(Luigi Moretti)的。莫雷蒂是米开朗基罗和博罗米尼的伟大鉴赏家,他以自己的方式为近代研究和重塑了巴洛克风格。他的建筑充满了隐喻、类比和参考,我们越是研究他的著作和建筑,就越能理解他作品的复杂性和重要性。关于萨拉切纳住宅(La Saracena)的文字不多,当四年前第一次访问这所房子时,我们发现它处于衰败的状态。幸运的是,去年我们有机会重回萨拉切纳住宅,看到它完全修复后的状态。

从外面看,这座住宅的特征类似于公共建筑,甚至可能像教堂,进入后,感觉仿佛步入一个机构的长廊而非一个家。鉴于这些感受,对你们来说是什么使它成为一所住宅?

这座住宅的居家性是由空间相互关联的方式赋予的,空间从纪念性的尺度平滑地过渡到与人体密切相关的尺度。

例如勒·柯布西耶的朗香教堂和萨拉切纳住宅之间有一些相似之处。两者中无疑都存在着惊人的结构、原始的厚重感和粗糙的抹灰。更重要的是,你无法在进入前看到建筑内部,至少从外面看,两者都是体量的构成。而关乎萨拉切纳住宅的是这些主题以何种方式保护与强调人体的尺度。一个很好的表明这种矛盾的例子是入口处,它由盘旋在前门上方的巨大体量标示出来。由于彻底的缺乏尺寸上的参考,这个体量其实是楼上露台的薄护栏的事实则被完全掩盖了。

长廊,乍看来会被认为是纪念性的,却连接起了许多小的片段:在那里你既可以用餐,也可以围坐于壁炉前,或只是踱步。独立来看,这个地方是很友善而紧密的。起居室——尽管它由朝向大海的户外木屋面增强,现实中虽然暴露在外,它仍然保持着居家的尺度。

与约翰·劳特纳(John Lautner)这样将建构与建筑各个部分的区别发挥到极致的建筑师相比,莫雷蒂并不试图表现壮观。他设法用一种非常自然的方式将空间压缩与释放。在萨拉切纳住宅中,复杂性正是源自于高度针对性的和良好比例的解决方案。而这是极其美丽的。

萨拉切纳住宅由不同的形状和几何组成。这种形状、直线和弧线的组合应用能具备怎样的潜力?

对我们而言,要理性地诠释这点是非常困难的。我不知道这种混合形式的意义是什么,但我们深受吸引。一种解释是,莫雷蒂经常直接的从其他领域进行参考。例如卢西奥·丰塔纳(Lucio Fontana)和卡拉瓦乔(Caravaggio)就经常出现在他的作品中。后者在其画作中,通过有对比度的光线,标记出一个场景最富张力的瞬间。

莫雷蒂采用了这一主题,并在他的建筑中以不同的方式将其转化,以达到相同的效果。在萨拉切纳住宅中有许多切口,打开了意想不到的一瞥。然而,纵使碎片化,当人进入其中时,一切都有了意义。他似乎非常善于构思和打破系统。他同时操纵和解构了他创造的原则。尽管他是一个数学行家,但他并不满足于数学架构。这就是为什么,用理性的方式无法从他的思路中学到一些东西。可能要保持在直觉的水平上。例如保罗·波托格西(Paolo Portoghesi)从同样的参考开始,但他某种程度上陷于形式中,相较之下,莫雷蒂得以保持自由。

萨拉切纳住宅是一座需要在运动中体验的建筑。它更多地与动态序列有关,而不是静态的图像或公式。然而我们不仅被住宅中的运动所吸引,也被通过移动体验到完全不同的场景——这一事实所吸引。如果你不能参观萨拉切纳住宅,你只需看剖面——看到不同空间的相互作用,能理解到的比平面图所揭示的更多。

要欣赏萨拉切纳住宅,有没有什么是必须了解的?

如果你以去结构主义者为例,他们也混合了形式和几何,但他们的实验往往和人体的尺度及活动无关。他们只是学术性的演习。萨拉切纳住宅不是一个演习。这座住宅将抽象的概念做到极致,但仍聚焦于人的形象。这有很大的不同。

莫雷蒂以一种连贯而深刻的方式研究人类尺度的问题。他建构并在《空间(Spazio)》杂志上发表的关于米开朗基罗和博罗米尼建筑的分析模型,旨在理解人,建筑和虚空之间的关系。

另一个主题是矛盾,这在莫雷蒂的大多数建筑中都很显著。对于我们自己的实践来说,这也非常重要,我们持续的自问,如何把不同种类的元素整合在一起。一些建筑试图通过物质性来达成。相较之下,莫雷蒂从不谈论物质,他的建筑对此来说过于抽象。相取代的,他使用了光。仅仅通过光和影的调节,他就能处理好纯粹的空间和绝对的建构体系的共存,这就产生了将许多独立、有区别的领域融合为一的效果。

这是我们试图做什么的一个案例:我们研究那些精确的时刻,那些无法理性解释在发生什么的时刻。我们也采取严格的原则,通常和结构主题密切相关,而当我们设法打破这些原则时,魔力就产生了—— 置身于超现实中。

有没有特别引起注意的细节?

有的。这座住宅直面大海,尽管这并不是主要的想法。实际上主要的命题是你与更广阔的文脉(context)间的联系,并不是特定的“大海”或是“住宅”。地平线与海浪被当作文脉的一部分,而非绝对的主角。在通往大海的走廊尽头,有一个地方,你可以看见面对花园的墙上有一条从地面延伸到天花的切口。这个偶发的切口使你转向花园,面对新的私密的景色。

光从几乎互相触碰的两道梁间照进。这是一个极端复杂的时刻,你能同时看到一个系统的四个部分,而你之前没有意识到这点。光让你理解你在哪里,你可以看见什么,并在住宅中创造了一个意外的停顿。这个细节对住宅的良好运作并非必需,但当你在那儿时会接收到它对空间的强烈影响。令人惊讶的是,它并没有阻碍对墙面连续性的感知,但当你从一个空间步入另一个时,得益于光线变化,你感到它的存在。

莫雷蒂在他的著作中强调,他努力追求的一个重要品质是冒险精神。在今天的建筑中能否存在冒险精神,如果存在,距今50年的元素是否仍然有趣味?

目前在我们的事务所,我们主要在设计私人住宅。我们发现,冒险精神并不与时代紧密关联,对住宅来说,它更关乎建筑师的居住经验。住宅没有时间,它与那些委托和设计它的人所追求的价值观有关。

今天构思萨拉切纳住宅还有意义么?我们能否用莫雷蒂关于冒险的想法,来克服我们的局限性?当然。莫雷蒂对如何在这个别墅中生活的想法和意图仍然非常吸引人。我们发现他对冒险的研究具有普世性,且今日依旧奏效。

50年前,或许社会文化氛围更浓,拥有更多的人物类似于莫雷蒂,在23岁写下第一篇关于博罗米尼的文章。当时人们对文化有着更深刻的好奇心与关注。时至今日,在一个参与度低、功利化的社会中,将冒险的想法应用到项目中变得更加困难。

是否更多是经济或文化的标准使其变得困难?

时间,不同于金钱,是一个如今难以谈判的变量。根据我们的经验——预算越高,时间越短。这与你在逻辑上的预期相反。

然而,即使今天私人住宅仍然是一片沃土,具有很大的自由度去研究各种主题。单户家庭住宅是建筑学的主要话题。建筑师有机会将自己的语言最激烈的推进,无论它可能是什么。住宅的功能是完全主观的议题。与业主就什么是居家环境的意义进行协商也是成功的一部分。建筑师的能力也是教导业主,一个300平的长廊可以成为一间起居室而不是一个无用的空间。每次我们开始一个住宅的项目,我们接受编排与预算,但我们拒绝承认一个业主知道他或她想要如何生活。我们相信建筑师有责任,从方案的角度,去决定在建筑中生活的意义是什么,业主需要带有这样的信念并对结果持开放态度。莫雷蒂有着良好的技巧去吸引客户,并提出激进的生活理念。

2020715

Fondamenta

FONDAMENTA was founded in 2016 by Francesca Beatrice Gagliardi, Federico Rossi and Matteo Clerici.

Since 2017 it is run by Francesca Beatrice Gagliardi and Federico Rossi and is based in Milan. 

Strong is the belief in research and experimentation applied to construction where Building is the end to which architecture must strive to become itself. Free from constraint, the studio seeks to explore the possibilities behind an architectural concept taken to the extreme and the impact it provokes. 

FONDAMENTA questions conventions and supports contradictions. 

Fascination for structure and freedom from dogma represent the premises for the research; Structure traces space, organizes the program and generates the building. Governance of architecture through technology is believed to be the key to the creation of an organism. In 2019 the studio completed its first new building, the Winery of Monforte d’Alba, and is currently dealing with the construction of a domestic infrastructure masterplan in Val di Noto, Sicily. Surrealism reigns supreme.

www.fondamenta.archi