Cabinet of the City

Municipal Gallery of Modern and Contemporary Art, Rome

(Competition project, 2002)

To the north of the Porta Pia in Rome lies the site of the former Birra Peroni brewery. This project is for the reworking of a now-derelict group of buildings that had acted as stables and stores for the old complex. The design process was developed from the idea that the central element of the new intervention could take the form of a kind of ‘cabinet of collections’, which, through its notional opening process, would establish physical connections with the various parts of the urban block to be renewed. The courtyard thus played the role of a stage upon which the unfolding of the cabinet took place. The architecture of the cabinet was informed by the morphology of the city itself, and its detailed resolution evolved in relationship to the specific sites to which the internal elements of the cabinet variously referred.