Aldo Cibic : Not an Archistar…
Aldo Cibic
Not an Archistar…
G.T., September 22, 2008
Aldo Cibic started working independently in 1989 with Cibic & Partners, working in Italy and abroad on interior and industrial design. He teaches at the Domus Academy, Milan Polytechnic and the Design Faculty of IUAV in Venice and is an Honorary Professor at Tongji University in Shanghai.

Aldo Cibic
Aldo Cibic
Sharing a chair with Aldo Cibic

G.T.: I’d like to start with a question about the boundaries of design, of architecture, both typological and in terms of merit, meaning the questions and answers contemporary design manages to give... in a few words, please!

Aldo Cibic: You know, personally, I must say that I have always done what I wanted to do. And I have always attempted to ensure that what we call the "client" fit with my dreams and desires. In the sense that I am always inspired by observation of reality. Not necessarily by reading the newspapers, but by attempting to read reality as an architect, a designer and an urban planner, to have the type of role that metabolise these processes and seeks to translate them into designs. In this sense, what I mean is, what interests me the most is understanding the contemporary age, the times we live in. Forming your own idea. But also understanding the future. At this time there is no inflation of thought, we are not submerged by visions of the future. But getting back on topic, what I think is that we are in a very fluid situation, and it’s interesting to try and understand what kind of world we are heading towards, and then we can see what is different from the usual categories of design, as we were saying.

Aldo Cibic & Partners
Aldo Cibic & Partners
G.T.: On the role of the Archistar. It’s true, the architect needs to know what is going on. Photographing the contemporary, searching for answers, projecting them into the future wherever possible. At the recent UIA in Turin, people still had some very strong positions about the role of the Archistar as a sort of hero... Do you believe in this kind of role for the architect, or in sharing of responsibilities?

A.C.: Personally, I don’t believe in the role of the archistar at all. I travel a lot, and a see a lot. First of all, I’m not a star architect. And then I believe that the right approach is not attempting to understand how things are going, or rather, that we need a strategy upstream of this, a "political" and administrative strategy. A truly pluralistic, shared strategy. In our work for Microrealities, I work with plans for places and people, that is, the actions of the people who generate places. So this means we need someone who, when giving an architect a job to do, explains things, tells us what should happen in those places we are designing. We need to be able to predict a place’s positive impact on the community. Or, even better, how we can improve our lives. You go to see them, attempt to understand them, analyse them, build a story around them, a strategy, and decide what you need to do to ensure that this will happen organically and harmoniously. And this is why the concept of the Archistar doesn’t make sense, because in this case the sign of an object is more important than the condition that originated it.

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