Francesco Isidori (1971) graduated from ‘La Sapienza’ University in Rome in 1999. In 2006 he received a PhD for his research into Architectural Composition and Architectural Theory from the same university, with a thesis entitled ‘The Project of Background’, an investigation into the relationship between abstraction and expression in architecture, including research into a non-object-focused architecture. Since 2002 he has been a visiting professor at ‘La Sapienza’, where he leads a studio on architectural design. In 2003, 2008 and 2011 he served as a visiting critic at Cornell University in Rome and Ithaca, New York.
Francesco Isidori is regurarly invited to give lectures on Labics’s research and projects and to hold design workshops in a variety of Italian and international universities, including Università La Sapienza, Università Roma Tre, Cornell University, the University of Iowa, Syracuse University, Tulane University, and the University of Hannover.
Mast Foundation Mixed-Use Building, presented in GIS Bucharest 2015
MAST, a new mixed-use complex in Bologna, Italy. MAST Foundation is a cultural and philanthropic institution that focuses on art, technology and innovation and favors the development of creativity and entrepreneurship also cooperating with other institutions, in order to support economic and social growth. Conceived by the president of COESIA -an innovation-based industrial solutions company- Isabella Seragnoli , MAST is a private initiative open to the community that improves both staff welfare and the company’s public image . The activities offered to external visitors, as well as the services dedicated to company employees, share the same philosophy based on technology, art and innovation. The building is the result of a restricted design competition held in 2006. The winning architectural firm studio Labics (leaded by Maria Claudia Clemente and Francesco Isidori) was appointed to develop the project.
The building differs from the surrounding fragmented urban fabric in that it addresses its context, mediating between the solidity of the existing buildings on the company campus and the open spaces of the nearby River Reno park. It therefore has two ‘fronts’: a private, linear one which relates to the existing company buildings, and a second, public front that opens toward the city and park. This entrance consists of long ramps which directly address the park, inviting the public into the heart of the building.
MAST appears as a light, translucent and changeable building. The double skin-glass envelope covers the entire facade and it is composed of two layers: a transparent curtain wall and a glazed layer screenprinted with a pixelated photographic design; at night, the building becomes a bright seetrough object.
Francesco Isidori is winner of the International Architecture Award Chicago Athenaeum 2014.