African Architecture at Casa dell’Architettura

We are thankful to our friend Cinzia Abbate (Studio AeV Abbate e Vigevano Architetti Associati) for organizing the exhibition “Architecture in Namibia. Archaeology of the future: tomorrow’s architectural landscape”, from 15 November until 2 December, 2016 at Casa dell’Architettura. The exhibition opens with a conference (in English) on Tue 15 November (3:00-8:00 pm) on the themes raised in the exhibition. Register to participate (and receive professional credits) at the following link: …

Italy’s Seismic Challenge

Reflecting, after the earthquake in Central Italy, about the country’s ecological risks  Shortly after the 2009 earthquake in l’Aquila I was invited to attend a meeting of the Commissione Nazionale Grandi Rischi, part of Italy’s civil protection organization. The subject was calamities, whether environmental or anthropic, and how to prepare and respond. My take-away from this meeting was that the four phases of calamities are quite clear but our memories are short and …

TEVERETERNO thanks Director Tom Rankin

TEVERETERNO Director Tom Rankin, a long-time friend of Tevereterno and supporter of its efforts to reactivate Rome’s urban riverfront, has announced that he is stepping down in order to dedicate time to other projects and teaching. During Tom’s three-year period in office the organization grew dramatically, establishing for the first time a tangible local headquarters in Rome and a strong public presence globally. “The highlight of my tenure,” Rankin states,  “was …

The New Old: Revealing Santa Maria Antiqua in the Roman Forum

Over a decade ago I first had the privilege of visiting the early Christian sanctuary tucked into a corner of the forum below the imposing cliff-like ruins of the imperial palaces. In addition to containing a rare collection of wall paintings spanning the 6th – late 8th centuries, this is an interesting example of adaptive reuse of a pagan structure into a church, made all the better by the fact …

William Kentridge’s Triumphs and Laments

Rome’s biggest contemporary art work was unveiled on April 21st 2016 with great festivities and will be visible for years to come on the walls of the Tiber riverfront. Launched by the local non-profit organization Tevereterno Onlus, for which I served as Director since late 2012, the work was an extraordinary team effort with a list of credits to rival Hollywood productions. The mission of Tevereterno is to reactive the …

Keeping Your Cool in a Roman Summer

Cool off in the shade of pine trees, feeling the breeze waft across the hills from the Apennines to the Mediterranean.  Duck into centuries old churches for a lesson in passive cooling: the masonry walls are so thick the heat won’t reach the interior until the end of summer! Or descend back in time into one of the many underground archeological sites: the temperature stays a cool 15 degrees C. …

Green Modernity

Villa Borghese and the Modern City Of the many public parks in Rome none is better known than the Villa Borghese which comprises nearly 200 acres to the north of the Spanish Steps. Long the property of the wealthy and noble Borghese family,  the gardens were purchased by the Italian state after the unification of Italy and make public in 1903 and are today a destination for those seeking green space, …

Roma 2025

  Roma: 2025: Ideas for the New Metropolis At MAXXI recently (18 December 2015) 25 projects were unveiled for 25 quadrants of greater Rome. Inspired by the 1978 Roma Interrotta project exhibit which saw 12 international architects address the planning of Rome’s historical center, this initiative, titled Rome 20-25: New Life Cycles for the Metropolis addressed the city at a much larger scale. 12 foreign universities, plus 12 Italian ones were invited to work on …