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The Decorative Architecture of Renzo Mongiardino

By (author) Renzo Mongiardino


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  • The re-issue of the famous text (originally published in 1993) by Renzo Mongiardino, one of the most celebrated interior architects of the 20th century
  • The appendix reproduces 16 previously unpublished sketches by Mongiardino belonging to the Raccolta Bertarelli of the Sforza Castle in Milan
  • Published to coincide with an exhibition "Omaggio a Mongiardino", Milan, Sforza, September - December, 2016
Full Description

“The mention of Mongiardino still elicits instant reverence. With his alchemic blurring of eras, the sheer scope and commitment of his massive projects and insistence on valuing ambience above so-called authenticity, he attained mythic stature.” – The New York Times Style Magazine Roomscapes is not only a beautiful testament to Mongiardino’s imaginative creations, the magnificent rooms he re-shaped and decorated in ancient Italian and Parisian palaces, English houses, New York apartments, but it is an important text that analyses space, function, decoration and lighting of rooms. It is meant as a guide to conceive spaces that are inhabited through time and by time. Sketches, drawings, and models by Mongiardino, next to the images of the finished rooms, make the creative process clear and showcase his extraordinary ability and taste. Roomscapes was originally published in 1993 and has long been out of print. Contents: Preface by Giovanni Agosti; Introduction; Part one: The genesis of a room; Sketches; Chapter one: Space, measure, and models; Chapter two: The function of a room and its appearance; Chapter three: Decoration: ways to invent it, transform it, correct it; Chapter four: Decoration and the appeal of the exotic; Part two: Illusion: the eye deceived; Chapter five: Materials and the simulation of materials; Chapter two: The birth and development of perspective; Conclusion; Appendix: 16 unpublished sketches by Renzo Mongiardino.

About the Author

Renzo Mongiardino, born in Genoa in 1916, was one of the world’s most renowned designers of the 60s, 70s and 80s, and remains highly influential. Although trained as an architect, and at a time when modernism ruled design, Mongiardino found inspiration in the likes of Bernini, Piranesi, Palladio, and the theater. He counted among his clients Gianni Agnelli, Lee Radizwill, Gianni Versace, Baron Thyssen-Bornemisza, Rudolf Nuryev, Valentino, and Baron Guy de Rothschild. Equally at home in the world of performance, he collaborated with Franco Zeffirelli on many films, including The Taming of the Shrew with Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton; and designed the set for Maria Callas’s triumphant return to opera in Tosca at Covent Garden. He died in 1998 at the age of 82.

Officina Libraria
27th Oct 2016
World excluding Italy and France
285 mm x 245 mm
240 Pages
260 color, 18 b&w
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