Rome is an off-centre metropolis, out of an orthodox perception of time, where every single past becomes present in a continuous state of monumental contemporariness.
Continuity and crisis share the same space: ancient brick walls are flanked by the anonymous ‘palazzine’ complex of the latest years and among these the everyday madness of the city: ceaseless traffic, tourists blinded by the scorching sun, the pink roman dust settling on monuments. And again: traditions, languages, researches, cultures and avant-gardes, compose a living postcard with an inimitable capacity for self-renewal.
When in Rome
5 September – 8 October, 2017
RIBA Royal Institute of British Architects
66 Portland Place, London
Is there a language to rebuild? A tradition to rethread? In an age of multiplication of images and sources of inspiration, is there something still to explore in the Roman landscape? Are the postcards from Rome still able to produce emotion, to inspire a future action? Through the work of several young practices, When in Rome expores this possibility: an architecture born from a deep reflection on tradition which is still able to produce something new.
An architecture that counteracts this “loss of identity” by showing a profound interest in architectural theory and research coming from a generation of architects born in the ‘80s: a counter-trend that tries to recover a debate lost years ago and obstructed by a cumbersome star system.
Their theoretical, critical and historical approach attempts to rediscover a thoughtful dimension behind the architectural subject.
‘Re Constructivist Architecture’ (previously at Ierimonti Gallery, New York) showcased the work of thirteen international practices presenting a residential project for the Roman countryside, a ‘villa nella campagna romana’. A design exercise meant as a typological investigation, or, more generally, as a meditation on the autonomy of the architectural discipline.
At the same time, ‘Unbuilt Rome’ (previously at CAMPO), Rome) explored the idea of the city through a series of unrealised projects designed for Rome. Asking nine Italian offices to investigate some examples of this invisible but present patrimony that had a significant influence on the architectural culture and on the debate on the city.
This combination of projects its a gift to the city of Rome, an homage to the city that once inspired and influenced generations of architects, a first step towards the re-threading of an important tradition.
The exhibition has been curated by Jacopo Costanzo, Giulia Leone and Valentino Danilo Matteis.
PARTICIPANTS with Bernard Tschumi
AM3 | fala atelier | False Mirror Office | Fosbury Architecture | Adam Nathaniel Furman | jbmn | MAIO | PARA Project | Parasite 2.0 | Point Supreme | Something Fantastic | UNULAUNU | Warehouse of Architecture and Research | TRAUMNOVELLE | BDR Bureau | Ganko | Gosplan | La Macchina Studio | Raumplan | Supervoid | Jacopo Valentini