7 Modern Architects at Home

We take a look back at Salone del Mobile's 2014 special exhibition—Where Architects Live—with a sneak peek into the personal living spaces of David Chipperfield, Shigeru Ban, and more.
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Francesca Molteni—of the Italian family who owns Molteni & C, among others—curated the exhibition "Where Architects Live," which was held at Salone del Mobile in Milan in April 2014. Molteni visited the private homes of eight world-renowned architects to conduct interviews and film their domestic spaces with the help of scenographer Davide Pizzigoni. The exhibition recreated the private "rooms" of Shigeru Ban, Mario Bellini, David Chipperfield, Shigeru Ban, Mario Bellini, David Chipperfield, Massimiliano and Doriana Fuksas, Marcio Kogan, Daniel Libeskind, Bijoy Jain/Studio Mumbai, and the late Zaha Hadid. By revealing the details of these architects’ chosen environments, we're given a chance to understand their obsessions and visions for living.

Massimiliano and Doriana Fuksas

Francesca Molteni writes, "A table, a window, a royal square, statues and horses. In Paris, Place des Vosges, Doriana and Massimiliano Fuksas’s home. Original Jean Prouvé furniture, and masses of artworks, from Fontana to Paladino. On the threshold, antique warriors stand guard over the house and protect it, like custodians awaiting the return of its traveling architects."

Architect Massimiliano Fuksas and his wife Doriana, also a designer, split their time between Paris and Rome. 

Naturally, architect David Chipperfield's Berlin home is as restrained as the commissions that have made him world renowned. 

"First his studio, then his home. David Chipperfield chose Berlin, after the city commissioned him to rebuild the Neues Museum in 1997. It is in the same neighborhood, Mitte. In the courtyard that contains both his house and his studio, Chipperfield also designed a canteen, a place where locals meet. The house is built of concrete, with large windows overlooking the street and the courtyard. It contains a few ’50s and ‘60s Italian furnishings, and two colours. The green of a velvet sofa and the orange of a bookcase that divides the space between the kitchen and the sitting room." 

Mario Bellini loves Milanese urban culture, the city. His home, in a C19th building reworked by Piero Portaluppi, is designed around a large 9 metre tall library/staircase, which runs through and across it like a telescope. The books, artworks and objects make it reminiscent of Antonello da Messina’s painting of St. Jerome’s study. He is about to embark on a design for a white cube, his new home. That is his dream.  

Milanese architect Mario Bellini at home. 

Marcio Kogan’s house shoots up towards the sky, reflecting the bright, free spaces of Brazil. He designed the building, his first winning competition entry in 1980; his home is on the 12th floor. A window frames the view over the city, like a huge panoramic screen, for an architect who dreamt of the cinema. The space is full of works, signed pieces, ornaments, travel souvenirs. Kogan remembers the story of each one of then and how they got here. A nightmare for the memory. 

"Hanegi Forest–architecture among trees, designed by Shigeru Ban in 2007. The challenge was to avoid pulling down a single tree in the forest and to build a house around them. Shigeru Ban’s home is in this building, which stands immobile in a tranquil Tokyo district. A round table, a Terragni chair, a Greek face and masses of light. Nothing else, a Zen monk’s room." 

"After traveling the world, from Poland to Tel Aviv, from the Bronx to Berlin, by way of Milan and Detroit, Daniel chose New York as his home. Tribeca is just a hop and a skip from Ground Zero. His house is a refuge. Books, books and more books. Brushes for mapping new worlds. And a table, with red legs and a granite top, built when there was less history to cart about, which has followed the family throughout its lengthy journey to Manhattan." 


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