Talking with Riccardo Blumer: Laboratorio Ceramics of Italy and more.
From 1 to 10 May, the Triennale in Milan will host the “Laboratorio Ceramics of Italy” exhibition curated by the blumerandfriends firm, with Marazzirepresented by the SilverstoneandKashmir variants of its Mystone stoneware. For the occasion, Riccardo Blumertalked to us a little about this project and other topics.
1. Where did you get the idea for the “Laboratorio Ceramics of Italy”, on show in these days at the Triennale in Milan?
The relationship between food and ceramics is man’s ability to produce relationships between natural materials, and relate them in new ways, by mixing, to produce another, artificial product which acquires its own finished, integral status.
For the Expo, which takes food, the foundation of life, as its theme, we decided to display not the product, but the process of its creation, on beautiful ceramics. The relationship with ceramics is therefore a profoundly cultural one.
2. In your view, what is the role of ceramics in architecture today?
I like to think of ceramics as the “tactile” aspect of architecture. A building’s sensitivity depends on its skin, the exterior expression of the entire construction and the point where artifice meets the world around it.
What we are asking here is a role that is incredibly inseparable from that of the building itself, and thus of vital importance.
3. If you had to choose a project that represents you particularly well, which would you choose?
If I could choose an architectural project I hadn’t designed myself, it would take pages and pages ... but if it has to be one of my own, the last one: the children’s whale at the Milan Triennale, the permanent architectural installation for teaching activities, a big overturned basket that creates a special place.
4. What are you working on at present?
The most “intriguing” things are those I’m doing with the schools, where I can open workshops like the one we’re inaugurating at the Triennale, which expresses processes and not products ... an inseparable relationship which today we absolutely have to re-establish as a cultural act against the ever-present banality of “car body” forms.
Professionally, there’s a residential project near Milan that gives me satisfaction because of the generous curves of the elliptical ground plan I decided to use. I imagine it as a big ceramic monolith.