Design on a human scale

Date 1 October 2007

Categories Publications


Massimo Roj’s architectural mission is all in his declared intent to place “Man in the Centre”. Progetto CMR applied a strong principle: the container cannot be what sets neither the rules that govern behaviour nor, consequently, those that govern the facilities. Instead, it is the well-being of the user that must dictate the principles upon which the architectural organism is designed, based on the real necessities. However, that which can appear at first simple, if not foregone must, in practice, virtuously combine: inexpensiveness and creativity, aesthetic and ethic, helpfulness and dialogue and, obviously, professionalism and commitment within the context of project design.
To design an architectural project around the real needs of man also means conceiving and applying innovation, value and passion. Innovation in terms of a solution designed to cater to the dynamic reference conditions; value as a solution designed to provide for the possible economic as well as organizational changes in the future of the firm; passion as an attention towards all the actors involved and their real and sincere needs.
It is history and memory, as always, that can prove helpful: Vitruvius’ man is “measure of all things”, whilst the Renaissance one expands the static point of view of the project anticipating a very contemporary object of focus: that of the well-being of the individual. (“In the choice of the environment it is best to mind that it is welcome by its inhabitants from every point of view”, Leon Battista Alberti, De re aedificatoria). And, lastly the Le Corbusier’s “Modulor”, defining parameters that are also applied in the field of design. But the contemporary consideration of man has deteriorated to that of a consumer of goods and spaces. It is therefore necessary, as can be observed in the works of Progetto CMR, to renew a more sensible attention to man for he cannot avoid confronting himself not only with three dimensions of the physical world, but also with the dimension of time, which becomes a new measure of reference.
Italo Calvino wrote: “In the manner in which today’s culture views the world there is a tendency emerging at once from various sources: the world, in its many facets, is viewed all the more as discrete and not as continuous. I use the term ‘discrete’ with the meaning it holds in mathematics, which is that which is composed by separate parts”. The unifying answer of Progetto CMR to this consideration is born of an articulated and committed planning activity. It does not deal uniquely with the design of the architecture and interiors, nor with the sole optimization and management of spaces and people, but with these issues as a whole. Furthermore, this complexity is dominated by the active involvement of different professionals from diverse disciplines: architecture, engineering, security, and well-being. Each with specific knowledge and competency, poised to a view that is unified and strategic, organized and managed.
A multi-disciplinary approach that applies, in the exact measure required within a unitary vision that is more ample, articulated and complex, a transversal project methodology concerning the different disciplines involved in the process. An approach, that accounts for all the different stages of planning, from the idea to the final result. This within an activity that implies a shrewd strategic choice, a substantial economic commitment, a careful evaluation of the risk factors, a deep understanding of the operation.
Massimo Roj, in his neo-humanist vision, has done exactly this: to think and design interiors and architectures within which Man no longer suffers space according to hierarchical schemes imposed by tradition but, on the contrary, he receives from them essential stimulus for positiveness, creativity, well-being and dialogue.

[ from foreword “The value of the project” by Danilo Premoli ]

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