San Donato Milanese (Milan), 29 February 2012 - Eni will open its exhibition "A New Sign," tomorrow at the Triennale di Milano, which showcases ten finalists from the company’s international concept design competition for the new Eni headquarters in San Donato, Milanese. The competition was won by a team from Morphosis Architects. The exhibition will run from March 2 to April 1 and admission is free.
The idea of creating a new architectural project in the Metanopoli section of San Donato, Milanese began in 2010; today the new design features a renewed attention to seamless integration between landscape, architecture and the urban area, while taking into account the most advanced criteria for sustainability. Metanopoli is one of the largest examples of organic design in Italy, so much so that the "new sign" was thought of in terms of modern landscape design. The fluid architecture by Morphosis Architects takes this idea, reprocesses and updates it, so as to draw in every single element of proper architecture-landscape.
Eni is committed to growth; through its sustainable development model, it aims to recognize the value of individuals, contribute to the development and welfare of the communities in which it operates, respect the environment, and help to promote innovation and continuous dialogue with its stakeholders.
Since its founding, Eni has played a central role in innovation and creativity by directing its company’s resources towards supporting cultural initiatives, both broad-based and focused activities on economic and industrial development.
Eni has always been interested in issues related to the relationships between people and places. The same field of activity puts the company in direct contact with the land, its shape, its resources and the neighboring countryside. In this context, the presence of Eni in Metanopoli, through both the company’s roots and physical headquarters, is a recognizable symbol of the Milanese territory.
The exhibition is divided into two spaces: “know‘ and “raw‘.
The “know‘ path offers a framework for the historical and urban context for the new building. San Donato has been an attractive location for various innovations in architecture since the 1950s, all inspired by the vision of Eni and the attention to its corporate and institutional spaces of work with respect to the adjacent territory.
The “raw‘ path, however, leads directly into the space where visitors are exposed to all 10 projects, a vision of "pure" architecture, unfiltered by its cultural context. The projects are presented in an ”equal’ manner in order to enhance the design and creative effort of each team.
The vision of the project is consistent with the presentation of the models themselves: laid on large white surfaces that seem to float on a halo of light.
For each project there are two boards, displaying the first and the last of the ten projects in order to represent the development of the idea.
In addition to the presentation of the projects, the exhibition includes digital content. A slide-show presents the works in their entirety, and two computer stations allow visitors to experience the technical aspects and design of the proposed addition, and review the specifications of the competition held by Eni.
The new headquarters represent "a new sign" for the Metanopoli area when compared to existing architecture. This concept was used to create the graphics developed for the exhibition, which combine the landmarks of San Donato with a yellow line through space.
During the exhibition, on March 13, Thom Mayne, founder of Morphosis Architects, will present a lecture to discuss his team’s winning design.
This exhibition links Eni to culture once again: the contest gives the opportunity for a discussion on new trends in contemporary architecture.