Partner at OBR – Open Building Research
“Architecture as an evolutive process”
“Design is the result of an evolutive process, crossing boundaries, taking risks, also making mistakes, but always exploring the future and the unknown, which is the only place we have to go to, if we have to go somewhere.” – arch. Paolo Brescia
Lehariya Jaipur, India – OBR Open Building Research
The Lehariya project defines a cluster through the articulation of four buildings laid out like a system of parallel fingers slightly tapered to open the internal spaces towards the view of the landscape. The ground floor dedicated to retail is completely open to the city. The upper floors are designed as extremely flexible open-plan offices. The buildings are encased by vertical screens, which extend themselves beyond the buildings, creating an overlapping effect of progressive transparency when seen from the street, while addressing the specific climatic conditions of Jaipur by functioning like vertical canopies that shade the buildings. Just like a textile, the screens are created by an interlaced structural system of tana (warp) and bana (weft), composing a system of 60,000 vertical ceramic baguettes woven onto vertical metal bars, to appear as a macro textile protecting the buildings. The design of the façade has been developed in collaboration with local artists morphing the traditional pattern of Lehariya with parametric modelling, incorporating climatic and technical requirements. The design intent is to reinforce the sense of place, promoting the sense of community, sharing the same values connected to local roots and enhancing the individual identities of the people. The screens forming the façades are thought as a medium to re-connect contemporary architecture to the art & craft traditional of Jaipur: the ceramic baguettes, hand-made by the craft producers from Rajasthan, broaden the meaning of multiplicity, where (handmade) repetition is not mere (industrial) multiplication, but a way to demonstrate the magnificence of local materials and iconography. Through the transposition from the small scale of arts & craft to the larger scale of architecture, the intrinsic variation in the hand-made ceramic baguettes becomes evident, without altering but, instead, enhancing the building process, as well as the life of the people involved in the building process at any level (designers, artisans, producers, inhabitants).
Faculty of Philosophy, Università Statale di Milano
Architectural Association, London
Graduated in Architecture from Politecnico di Milano
Prof. Pierluigi Nicolin
1998 > 2000
Worked for Renzo Piano Building Workshop
2003 > 2009
University assistant professor at Faculty
Università degli Studi di Genova
2004 > 2005
Professor in charge, Politecnico di Milano
La Biennale di Venezia, Padiglione Italiano
AR Award for Emerging Architecture
Honourable mention, RIBA, London
Bienal de Arquitetura de Brasília
Bienal Internacional de Arquitectura de Buenos Aires
Plusform Award, Best realised architecture under 40
Urbanpromo Award, Biennale di Venezia
Medaglia d’Oro all’Architettura Italiana
Honourable mention finalist, La Triennale di Milano
European 40 Under 40 Award, Madrid
In/Arch Ance Award
Best building realised by a young architect, Roma
LEAF Award overall winner, London
WAN Awards Residential, London
Medaglia d’Oro all’Architettura Italiana
Finalist, La Triennale di Milano
Good Design Award, Chicago
Ad’A Award for Italian Architecture
Professor in charge, Università di Genova
Building Healthcare Award for Best International Design, London
Architizer A + Awards finalist, London
Inarch International Award for Architecture and Design, Milano
AAP American Architecture Prize for Architectural Design, New York
In 2000 Paolo Brescia and Tommaso Principi established the collective OBR Open Building Research to investigate new ways of contemporary living, creating a design network among Milan, London and Mumbai.
After working with Renzo Piano, Paolo and Tommaso have oriented the research of OBR towards the integration artifice-nature, to create sensitive environments in perpetual change, which stimulate the interaction between man and environment.
The team of OBR develops its experimental line through the participation in projects concerning public-private social programs, promoting – through architecture – the sense of community and the individual identities.
Today OBR is group open to different multidisciplinary contributions, cooperating with different universities, such as Accademia di Architettura di Mendrisio, Aalto University, Academy of Architecture of Mumbai and Mimar Sinan Fine Art University.
Among the best known works by OBR are the Pythagoras Museum, the New Galleria Sabauda in Turin, the Milanofiori Residential Complex, the Children Hospital in Parma, the Galliera Hospital in Genoa, the Lido of Genoa, the Ex Cinema Roma, the Triennale di Milano Terrace.
The under construction projects by OBR include the Lehariya Cluster in Jaipur and the Jafza Traders Market in Dubai.
OBR’s projects have been featured in Venice Biennale of Architecture, Royal Institute of British Architects in London, Bienal de Arquitetura of Brasilia, MAXXI in Rome and Triennale di Milano.
OBR has been awarded with the AR Award for Emerging Architecture at RIBA, the Plusform under 40, the Urbanpromo at the 11° Biennale di Venezia, the honourable mention for the Medaglia d’Oro all’Architettura Italiana at the Triennale di Milano, the Europe 40 Under 40 in Madrid, the Leaf Award in London, the WAN Residential Award, the Building Healthcare Award, the Inarch Award for Italian Architecture and the American Architecture Prize for Architectural Design in New York.
– 2016 AAP American Architecture Prize for Architectural Design, New York
– 2015 In/Arch International Award for Architecture and Design, Milano
– 2014 Building Healthcare Award for Best International Design, London
– 2014 Architizer A + Awards, Finalist, London
– 2013 Ad’A Award for Italian Architecture, Roma
– 2012 Gold Medal for Italian Architecture, Finalist, La Triennale di Milano
– 2012 Green Good Design Award, Athenaeum Museum of Architecture and Design, Chicago
– 2012 WAN Awards Residential, London
– 2011 Leaf Awards overall winner, London
– 2011 LEAF Leading European Architect Forum Award, Residential Building of the Year, London
– 2011 In/Arch Ance Award, Realized architecture by young architect, Roma
– 2010 European 40 Under 40 Award, Madrid
– 2009 Gold Medal for Italian Architecture, Finalist, La Triennale di Milano
– 2008 Urbanpromo Award, INU Istituto Nazionale Urbanistica, La Biennale di Venezia
– 2008 Plusform Award, Best realised architecture under 40, Roma
– 2007 AR Award for Emerging Architecture, Honourable mention, RIBA, London