The events that enhanced the intense days during Marmomac 2019 saw a prominent place go to the presentation of a book that enabled visitors to The Italian Stone Theatre enter a rich stone universe full of events and materials.
One can speak of a genuine threshold towards this world, precisely because the title of the book in question was “Entrances Halls in Milan”.
Organized by the Verona Stone District and Veronafiere in collaboration with the Valpantena Marble Consortium, the presentation of the book published by Taschen and edited by Karl Koblitz was a very effective opportunity thanks to the impressive report by geologist Grazia Signori who, in collaboration with the curator, wrote the commentaries in the book about the stone materials, combining in a timely and precise manner with the truly impressive images. Milan in the period between the 1920s and the 1970s saw the construction of residential buildings that always assigned a prominent role to entrance halls and atriums, involving an impressive selection of stone materials and their use in exemplary and refined designs.
Beyond the threshold
Leafing through the pages of this book, as well as in the preview presented at Marmomac, there are works by architects such as Andreani, Caccia Dominioni, Magistretti, Muzio, Giò Ponti, Portaluppi, Ridolfi, Studio BBPR, Terragni and many others who contributed to the modern face of Milan. These buildings are an extraordinary repertoire of stone materials in the transition between exterior and interior – the atrium – seen as an ideal space for exercise and experimentation in style, whereby the spirit of the times was expressed across several decades of the twentieth century. Here, we find not only local marbles – some varieties of which are no longer quarried, such as Giallo Moro – a sandstone from the area between Trento and Verona – used in a Palladian floor with Carrara and Giallo Siena, to mention just one example. Highly-prized and elegant marbles such as Portugal Pink or Arabescato Orobico, as well as more common materials such as Travertine, albeit enhanced by strips of Verde Alpi. What makes the book such a valuable tool is precisely the detailed identification of the stone materials used for every example shown: a precision as rare as some of the marbles to be found in these entrance halls in Milan.