Barreca & La Varra at “Best Italian Interior Design Selection” by CasaPlatform @Venezia2021

The Ugolini HQ project has been selected for the thematic exhibition to be held in the Scuola Grande di Santa Maria della Misericordia from 22 May to 22 August 2021, in conjunction with the first three months of the Venice Architecture Biennale.

The “Best Italian Interior Design Selection” exhibition offers an overview of interior design projects by Italian designers, with no limitation in terms of geography or type (residential, hospitality, retail, etc.). The project is also published in a volume dedicated to the initiative, which will enrich the “Best Design Selection” collection that Platform inaugurated and continues from 2018. Gianandrea Barreca and Giovanni La Varra will also participate in the PLATFORM ARCHITECTURE FESTIVAL, a busy schedule of speeches and lectures by the selected firms in the 5-day exhibitions (14-17 July 2021). Their talk is scheduled for Saturday 17 July 2021.

“We believe that the Ugolini HQ project can be summed up in the concept of continuity: the internal courtyard unites the industrial, warehouse, production and service areas in a single continuous building, and the people who work in these places enter through the same doors. The architecture does not conceal the nature of the building but tries to find a common thread between these souls, which clearly have very different dimensional and organisational requirements. We wanted to realise the client’s wishes in a building that was orderly and linear in its settlement principle and in its internal distribution; within this condition we were given the freedom to imagine in some points apparently extraneous elements, such as the triple-height entrance lobbies, generous spaces for the size of the building with spatially very rich staircases and domestic materiality. The large external windows and the internal glass walls contribute to reinforcing this idea of continuity and community, also towards the landscape of the surrounding countryside,” say Gianandrea Barreca and Giovanni La Varra.

The studio Barreca & La Varra has been responsible for the design of the new headquarters of the historic Milanese company Ugolini S.p.a., which has been producing refrigerating machines for soft drinks and ice cream for over 75 years, in its entirety: from the design of the master plan to the architectural project, landscape design and interior design. On the 63,000 square metre site, the 3,000 square metre office building reinterprets the morphology of the Lombard farmhouse with an open courtyard, and embraces four large trees that animate the collective space. Four entrance lobbies, two of which are double-height and very bright thanks to the zenithal skylights and spherical lighting fixtures supplied, like all those in the project, by HI LITE Next S.r.l., distribute meeting rooms and offices, most of which are open-plan, with the tables of the FREZZA S.R.L. workstations and meeting rooms. The interiors, almost “domestic”, feature sober and refined materials, treated with extreme refinement and attention to handcrafted detail, such as the solid wood panelling that covers the main lobbies, in continuity with the flooring of the stairways. The interior spaces are visually interconnected thanks to large glazed movable walls by LAS MOBILI s.r.l., and wood panelling is also found in the offices, where movable walls and perimeter furnishings are finished in oak, also by LAS MOBILI s.r.l. Adjacent to the offices is the 5,500 square metre production area, while the 5,700 square metre warehouse is an isolated volume. In the courtyard, four large circular LED lighting fixtures made to design break into the rigorous and geometric general design as “extraneous” elements.

Barreca & La Varra would like to thank the supporting companies FREZZA S.r.l., HI LITE Next S.r.l., LAS MOBILI S.r.l.

The exhibition is open to the public from 22 May to 22 August 2021, every day except Monday, from 10 am to 6 pm | Scuola Grande di Santa Maria della Misericordia, Sestiere Cannaregio, 3599, 30121 Venice

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