About this talk

Running time: 23 minutes

The Italian architect Vittorio Gregotti graduated from Milan Polytechnic in 1952, and set up in practice. First it was with L. Meneghetti and G. Stoppino, then on his own, and since 1974 with P. Cerri and H. Matsui as Gregotti Associati in Milan. From 1964 - 1978 he taught at Milan Polytechnic, and since then he has been teaching at the School of architecture in Venice University. He was editor of "Edilizia Moderna" from 1962 - 1964, co-editor of "Lotus" since 1974, and is currently editor of both "Casabella" and "Rassegna".

He is the author of the books "Territorio dell'Architettura" and "New Directions In Italian Architecture". Recent well-known works of his include the Rinascente in Milan 1970, the IACP Zen housing in Palermo 1970, the University of Calabria in Cosenza 1972 - 1975, the Italian Cultural Institute in Tokyo 1980, and the University of Palermo.

It is the University of Palermo that he uses to illustrate his talk. It was the first application of his theory of design of the large-scale landscape and the relationship between architecture and its context. He defines context as everything that can be deduced about the formation of the site, i.e. the physical aspect of its history, the structural truth. In the University, the Greek culture of Sicily is reflected in its geometry; the Arabic architecture of Sicily is echoed in the simple exterior enclosure of a complicated interior with filtered daylight; and the reduced height of the building is used to measure or define the undulating terrain. The new and the context are irreconcilable, but he expresses the characteristics of the particular context.

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Vittorio Gregotti


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