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By Luigi Prestinenza Puglisi -
Rheinzink has participated in the project

Elasticospa aims for expressive architecture of striking materiality. Stefano Pujatti, its founder, says as much in his monograph “Architettura al sangue” (Raw Architecture), published in 2008. As the title intimates, Pujatti seeks sensory involvement, the release of almost primordial energy, not perhaps without a touch of self-satisfaction, like ordering a rare steak to strike a politically incorrect anti-vegetarian pose.
“The architecture that interests me”, he writes, “springs from the fantasies of those that produce or commission it, because fantasies come close to ideas but are a little less pretentious”. Food has many analogies with the art of building: cooking requires putting together raw materials, mixing flavours to please the cook but also the particular tastes of the client. It is linked to ritual and tradition yet requires a critical, innovative approach. It involves the satisfaction of never repeating the same dish twice. And finally, because a good cook relies more on intuition and creative whim than on formulae or abstract reasoning.
Stefano Pujatti studied at the Venice faculty under Gino Valle, an architect with a strong feel for the materials of architecture. At the time, Valle was working in Paris and gave Pujatti the chance to follow a project to restore, renovate and re-contextualise an inner city block. This French experience was preceded by a period in Los Angeles where he met Tom Mayne, head of Morphosis and Wolf Prix, Coop Himmelb(l)au leader. They taught Pujatti about working with space even at the cost of breaking up the building. In 1995, Pujatti set up the practice Elastico with Simone Carena and Alberto Del Maschio and together they got themselves noticed for their experimental work. In 2005, Pujatti struck out on his own founding Elasticospa, Stefano Pujatti Architetti.
He claimed critics’ attention right from the first briefs. I’ll mention just three: the Yuppie Ranch House (with Alberto Del Maschio, Elastico3), a...

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