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Synthetic beach
@Countless Cities Biennale (1st Prize)

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LIDO FAVARA

Synthetic beach

@Countless Cities Biennale (1st Prize)

Farm Cultural Park,

2021

La terrazza di Palazzo Miccichè, tappa di Countless Cities Biennale e culmine di Human Forest, è un luogo nobile ed informale, dove indugiare e sentirsi accolti. Un salotto in quota che invita a stendersi, a rilassarsi, a spiaggiarsi – a giocare con il corpo per innescare la propria immaginazione. Lido Favara si rivela all'improvviso come un paesaggio surreale di sabbia lavica, come un osservatorio che guarda fuori mentre si riflette dentro. E' una stanza annidata tra interno ed esterno, tra natura ed artificio, che mira a limare il confine tra l'imprevedibilità dello spazio pubblico ed il calore del focolare domestico.

Archivi d'amore

Le piccole stanze di servizio della terrazza si (ri)vestono per l'occasione, diventano familiari nelle finiture ed intime nei contenuti. Al loro interno ospitano una serie di ritrovamenti: il primo, sopra il battiscopa verde, è proprio la carta da parati stessa – riproduzione pop di un motivo floreale presente al pianterreno di Palazzo Miccichè. Entrando, nei cassetti di due mobiletti in equilibrio sulla sabbia, vi sono invece dei reperti autentici, che Favara – città fragile ma generosa – ci ha di colpo messo a disposizione.

Mentre stavamo allestendo il padiglione, infatti, è crollata una vecchia casa, del centro storico. La casa era disabitata da anni, ma non per questo vuota: avvicinandoci ai detriti, abbiamo chiesto in punta di piedi ai proprietari se potevamo raccogliere tutti quegli oggetti che a loro non interessavano – memorie visive e tattili di parenti a cui non erano legati o, chissà, che non avevano nemmeno mai conosciuto. Abbiamo scoperto un mare di bottoni colorati, pagelle, vecchi libri sottolineati, cartoline e lettere d'amore. Si racconta di fratelli partiti per la Germania, auguri fatti in ritardo, regali spediti con grande insuccesso, punti della spesa mai riscossi, peripezie per gli ultimi esami di Università. Questi frammenti che meritavano di essere raccolti, conservati, e, con cautela, mostrati.

L'archivio di Lido favara, inteso come uno spazio in comproprietà tra i cittadini di Favara e chi vi si affaccia per la prima volta, comincia proprio da qui - dall'intersezione amorevole di storie tangibili e ricordi materiali. Sarà un archivio aperto, che ambisce ad accumulare nuovi pezzi, che ambisce a costruire rappresentazioni molteplici del mondo e sul mondo di Farm Cultural Park.

Una spiaggia sospesa

Sulla soglia, un cartello raccomanda agli avventori di togliersi le scarpe: scalzi, d'altronde, si è più spontanei, più giocherelloni. Un gioco di specchi caratterizza poi l'intera terrazza come macchina teatrale, in cui poter calibrare, dosandole a piacere, illusione e realtà. Camminando a piedi nudi sulla sabbia nera, aggiustando lo sguardo per catturare immagini che rimbalzano, si ha l'opportunità di re-inventare il modo di stare insieme, condividendo creativamente spazi, gesti e momenti. Pochi oggetti adornano questa spiaggia raccolta ma volutamente brulla, libera da impedimenti: un rastrello per disegnare solchi, due lavavetri per mettere a fuoco le immagini riflesse e dei teli da mare dalle dimensioni importanti, per livellare le dune e ricostruire sprazzi di convivialità.

La cupola della Chiesa Madre, che a Favara svetta ovunque, sostenuta dai mosaici colorati della sua facciata, è qui celebrata, moltiplicata – apparentemente ingrandita nel riflesso degli edifici che vi si arroccano attorno. Di notte, la città diventa una lanterna corale, che penetra la terrazza, illuminandone lo sfondo – trasformandolo nello schermo di un cinema muto, naturale e perpetuo.

Designed and curated by

Lemonot

with

Andrea Bartoli

Florinda Saieva

Marco Bellavia

Carmelo Nicotra

Photos

Santo Eduardo Di Miceli

Land Art
@Masseria Cultura

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MARBLE SALAD

Land Art

@Masseria Cultura

Puglia,

2020

“Marble Salad” is the main of three spatial still-lifes that have been developed throughout a month-long artist residency at Masseria Cultura, an old vernacular mansion situated in the middle of the countryside in Puglia, Italy.

The project reuses marble debris, collected from various refineries, located in neighbouring villages - then manually interlocked to compose a 4x4m solid platform on the ground. The surface could act as a walkable floor - a stage - or just as a contemplative device - an horizontal tactile and colourful canvas. The precise definition of its borders clashes with the wilderness of the open fields in the backyard of the mansion that surround it.

This area will be soon cultivated and transformed into a vegetable garden - rows of zucchini, aubergines, tomatoes, peas, carrots and purple cabbages will become the updated bucolic frame of the platform.

It’s almost a process of inverted mimesis: the marbles’ polychromy anticipates the organization of the vegetables - the artifice discloses nature.

The notion of time has been fundamental for the artworks, dealing with it in different ways. “Marble Salad” will act as a proper still-life, a permanent frozen snapshot immersed within an iteratively changing environment - the hortus. The other two interventions are instead more ephemeral: “Tra-Forato” is a totem made of hollow bricks, a stage-set for the landscape, a portable scenery flat to frame and construct specific viewpoints; “Red Carpet” was our first spatial intuitive rehearsal in the Masseria, an ironic commentary on the re-usage of humble debris.

The context allowed you to be immersed in nature, fostering both a metaphorical and physical dialogue with the landscape: this dictated not only the timing of the project but also defined the way we used certain materials - exploring issues of permanence, ephemerality and construction rhythm.

The three installations are the result of the collaboration with local old crafters, becoming almost built embodiment of the precious relationship we managed to establish with all of them.

Designed and constructed by

Lemonot

with

Letizia I. H. Tueros

Photos

Nicolò

Artist residency
@Insula Lab

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GLUTTONY’S TRIUMPH

Artist residency

@Insula Lab

Palermo,

2020

Designed and constructed by

Lemonot

Photos

Giulia Granvillano

Inhabi-Table
@Foodculturedays_competition

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HOU GOU FONDUE

Inhabi-Table

@Foodculturedays_competition

Vevey,

2019

All I want is a bowl of chop suey, A bowl of chop suey and you-ey, A cozy little table for two-ey, With a bowl of chop suey and you-ey. For a place that’s very Chinesy Is nice for a hug and squeezy, Where we can do a billion coo-eys With a bowl of chop suey for two-ey. Ben Bernie, Alyce Goering, and Walter Bullock, “A Bowl of Chop Suey and You-ey,” 1934, as performed by Sam Robbins and his Hotel McAlpin Orchestra

China was the first to attempt export of goods/ culture on a massive global scale with the Silk Roads. The trade routes not only became a way of exchange of goods but subsequently transformed into veins pumping culture, from one place to another. Food, music, art, language can be traced travelling this physical networks around the globe, in some cases adapted and re-appropriated whilst at others displacing what was once the norm.

The Silk Roads set the basis of a huge change from local to global, from intra to inter - globalisation; a word that has re-emerged as a concept with the boom of the internet and infrastructure and has overshadowed the world from early 90’s until today. Massive debates on the pros and cons - an open free market, cultural and material cross pollination, access to a global economy where countries have a voice outside the context they have operated for centuries. With the evolution of technology, the spread of knowledge, exchange nurtured this massive spread of ideas from micro to macro scale, from local to global. A dish invented in a street market somewhere could be scaled up into a world-wide phenomenon.

Yet the negative effects of this free movement of ideas, products, dishes infiltrating into different worlds and cultures has been alarming for some. The once tiny dish served in one area, scaled up and exported into different contexts cities overshadowing and ‘killing’ the local. Corporations capitalising on this dishes which in a way substitute local culture dishes and eliminating them.

This in particular has caused another movement against global food, against the faceless ‘corporation’ wanting to preserve the local cultures. Yet what is really local? We are at the point now that we are agonising on notions of authenticity, locality and truth. The term itself has often become a marketing construct to sell a product which has no longer a true identity. Locality has been bought by large corporations, wrapped and packaged and resold to the public.

Our project looks at how the Lazy Susan, an invention made in the US to share food on the table. It was exported and assimilated within China then re-exported back into the world. Our fascination with China and its long history exporting culture becomes the departure point and the main trigger for the Hou Gou table. We looked into Chinatowns and how these micro depictions of the mainland, emerge in every major city, showing how the country operates and handles physical and conceptual territory to establish itself in foreign lands.

This phenomenon of Chinese micro worlds, in cities around the world became the basis for our speculative fiction. Exotic islands floating against western cities, bright luscious red colours, exuberant pagodas and mythical dragons of the far east floating within our western cities of brick. We were interested not only in how their rich recipes and dishes are consumed within foreign territories but also how China has found a recipe to establish itself in the built environment and create a strong identity which can be easily replicated, pasted and appropriated around the world. Starting from a dish such as the hot pot, scaling up to the table, interior, street and whole building blocks, it has generated a robust presence and a business paradigm like no other. China has managed to export these conceptual islands to the rest of the world creating an archipelago of culture which infiltrates and enriches our cities.

Designed by

Lemonot

with

Urban radicals

Alberto Gramigni

Social table
@Ciciri via Lattarini

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TUTTI FRUTTI

Social table

@Ciciri via Lattarini

Palermo,

2019

Designed by

Lemonot

with

Francesca Leone

Francesca Malleo

Workshop and performance
@AAvs El Alto

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PORTABLE CHOLETS

Workshop and performance

@AAvs El Alto

El Alto,

2019

Portable Cholets: La mesa wants to experiment with anthropomorphic languages, ritualistic usages and composite video-editing - to re-enact part of the festive equipment that inspire and populate Freddy Mamani’s architectures.

Cholets are a privileged testing ground for these qualities: how can folkloric masks and costumes trigger an effective architectural cycle where inhabitation and aesthetic languages become mutually exclusive?

What is unique at a time where superficial otherness seems to have become the standard, where vernacular spontaneity has been replaced by overconstructed only polished photoshop images? El Alto gives us the opportunity to conceive architecture as a performative act - enabling the mutual immanence between bodies and spaces, objects and ceremonies. For us, performing fulfills necessities that have little to do with practical efficiency or quantitative variables. Rather, it is an evocative tool to activate symbolic links, to claim back identitarian needs and to depict qualitative hedonistic traits into physical spatial compounds.

Taught and directed by

Lemonot

with

Patricio Crooker

Marcos Loayza

Freddy Mamani Silvestre

AAvs students

Video

Alma Films

Inhabi-Table
@Hellowood Festival

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THE CARNIVAL TABLE

Inhabi-Table

@Hellowood Festival

Csóromfölde,

2019

In a contemporary society that is dangerously drifting towards alienation, mainstream architecture offers very little resistance. On one hand, massive real estate developments impose highly standardized forms governed by the logics of marketing. On the other hand, starchitects impose their superficial signature in an endless effort to be different from the competition. The actual users end up inhabiting spaces that represent very little - if nothing - of themselves. Ikea knick-knacks are the last resort to give a resemblance of identity to their homes.

Carnival was born as a temporary inversion of social conventions - can we speculate on how to invert reactionary architectural conventions? We want to use the ritual of eating and the symbolic power of a dining table - a place where people meet at the same level - in order to discard conventions and encourage a different practice of design, rooted in conviviality and freedom. By uncovering symbolic and social constructions through food, we aim to prompt a debate rich of symbolic explanations about human behaviour and rituals.

The table is an ancient place of unity, cohesion, equal exchange. Around the table the man enjoyed, rejoiced, but above all he told. From Plato's Symposium to Dante's Convivio, the stories that have been handed down before a meal are those that have invented and narrated the world.

We believe that it’s time for architecture to establish a new intimacy with its users, to become more human, to create culture and foster social interaction. With our Carnival table, we want architecture to provide space for self-expression instead of uniformity. We want architecture to draw people together instead of isolating them. We want architecture to be able to create stories again.

Designed and constructed by

Lemonot

with

Space Saloon

Collective Plant

Photos

Zsuzsa Darab

INDA workshop and exhibition
@ATT19 Gallery

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THE CHINATOWN EFFECT

INDA workshop and exhibition

@ATT19 Gallery

Bangkok,

2019

“The Chinatown effect” is a temporary installation at the ATT19 gallery designed and constructed in four weeks by INDA students in Bangkok. The project starts as a site-specific stage set, a series of props and composite videos investigating the notion of commonality and stereotype - in relationship to the world of Chinatown(s) as social typologies. When analysed through the Chinese cultural attitude towards reproducibility, the proliferation of Chinatowns reveals a network of what we define “authentic trans-territorial clichés”. We need to craft challenging techniques for the legitimization and preservation of such a specific yet diffused identity: Chinatowns are constantly reconstructed and experienced in different parts of the world, growing into a familiar system of habits, reminiscences and iconographical values that became a simulacrum of a sophisticated, layered domesticity for everybody.

Once inside the pavilion, the spectator, through videos on multiple screens, inhabit a “Chinatownised “ world made of communal rituals. The stage set itself, through its materiality, structure and ornaments, is a spatial manifestation of stereotypical yet identitarian forces: an inhabitable red folie, a dragon, a votive pavilion - a purposely recognizable architectural cliché. The project was first conceived and exhibited in Bangkok, then it will travel around the globe, to be showcased in the Chinatowns of different continents.

The Oxford Dictionary defines “Chinatown” as “a district of any non-Chinese town, especially a city or seaport, in which the population is predominantly of Chinese origin”. However, some Chinatowns may have little to do with China, while they certainly have in common with other Chinatowns in different locations. Indeed, if one hand these communities were able to resist and preserve their cultural origins more than other ethnic enclaves, they were also subject to a natural process of diffusion, exposure and commodification - that witnessed the rise of a worldwide shared "Chinatownised" identity. Travellers find there secure places where to recollect memories and authentic experiences. Clusters of exotic stimulating clichés - goods, signs and behaviours - that trigger an intuitive sense of familiarity and international domesticity.

The Chinese have two different concepts of a copy. Fangzhipin are imitations where the difference from the original is obvious. These are small models or copies that can be purchased in a museum shop, for example. The second concept for a copy is Fuzhipin. They are exact reproductions of the original, which, for the Chinese, are of equal value to the original. It has absolutely no negative connotations. The discrepancy with regard to the understanding of what a copy has often led to misunderstandings and arguments between Chinese and Western culture. Especially for Europeans, it’s difficult to accept that identity and renewal can be not mutually exclusive. Instead, in the Chinese culture - where continual reproduction represents a technique for conservation and preservation - replicas are anything but mere copies.

Taught and curated by

Lemonot

with

INDA students

Mook Attakanwong

Mook Attakanwong

Exhibition and Performance
@Archi Fest Singapore

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METTICI LA FACCIA

Exhibition and Performance

@Archi Fest Singapore

Singapore,

2019

“I cannot do a building without building a new repertoire of characters, of stories, of language and it’s all parallel. It’s not just building per se. It’s building worlds” J. Hejduk

We have been affected by a strange form of spatial Pareidolia. We are obsessively looking for anthropomorphic traces - hidden in the built apparatus that shapes the world. Our designs could not exist without the invention of the bizarre troupe supposed to populate them. Their stories, fears and love affairs intimately inform the architectural substance itself. Each building becomes a peculiar persona.

We practice only forms of knowledge based on physical experience: direct or emerged through the tangible re-enactment of empirical conditions. Speculation isn’t understood as pure invention or as a biased device to fill the gaps left by our uncertainties, but as a lens to frame and relentlessly process reality through design culture. The project is a journey articulated through a series of spatial performances. For us, performing has little to do with practical efficiency or quantitative variables. Rather, it is an evocative tool to activate symbolic links, to claim back identitarian needs and to depict qualitative hedonistic traits into physical spatial compounds.

The design process is nurtured through the assemblage of composite filters to enhance or alterate the human perception of coexisting beings, objects and spaces. Through a palimpsest of precise drawings and short films, we engaged with the architectural effects they produced on the real. The performative representation of space, together with its peculiar synthases and syntax, is an effective tool for a linguistic self-liberation: architects are provided with an appropriate vocabulary that finally re-connects them with a wider public.

Directed and curated by

Lemonot

with

Federico Armeni

Palma Bucarelli

Arianna Zamparelli

Simone Salviati

Tommaso Riccitelli

Gianluca Lorenzini

Vincenzo Morreale

Stacy Peh

Video

Agnese Sumonte

Farm Cultural Park, 2021
Venezia, 2021
Puglia, 2020
Palermo, 2019
Vevey, 2019
Palermo, 2019
La Paz, 2019
Budapest, 2019
Bangkok, 2019
Singapore, 2019
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lemonot

Sabrina Morreale, AA Dipl
Lorenzo Perri, AA Dipl (Hons)

projects@lemonot.co.uk

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INFO Lemonot
lemonot

Sabrina Morreale, AA Dipl
Lorenzo Perri, AA Dipl (Hons)

18b Ferntower Road
N52JH London, UK

projects@lemonot.co.uk

ABOUT

Sabrina Morreale and Lorenzo Perri are architects, educators and founding partners of Lemonot – an open platform for spatial and relational practices, born in London on June 24th 2016, the day of Brexit, and now fluctuating among London, Italy, Vienna and Latin America.

Sabrina graduated at the Architectural Association in 2016, awarded with the AA prize. She’s currently teaching in the Foundation course at the AA and in the School of Architecture in Reading.She has taught in Cambridge, while collaborating with various magazines (Rivista Studio, Cartha, Elle), with the RIBA as curator assistant  and with multiple architectural firms in London (OMMX, The Decorators and Office S&M), Her projects always explore notions of fragmentation, assembling techniques and authorship.

Lorenzo graduated with Honours at the Architectural Association in 2016. He’s currently teaching at the University of Applied Arts in Vienna and he’s a consultant for Experimental 9 at the AA. While participating in several competitions with international firms (Amid.Cero9, Elemental), he co-founded the research-based Plakat Platform and the architectural studio Ecòl. Obsessed with geometry and aesthetics, precision and expression, he studied engineering and classical piano before working in architecture.

Through Lemonot, they operate in between architecture and performative arts – using them as devices to detect, celebrate and provoke the spontaneous theatre of everyday life. Spatial production is neither the beginning nor the end of their stories, rather it is a filtering framework to grasp reality. Architecture becomes a medium to produce heterogeneous outcomes: from geometrical patterns and still-lives for the public space to pastry tools and toys, interactive pavilions, short films, performances and embroidered masks.

Their projects have been exhibited and awarded worldwide – at the Venice Biennale, at the YTAA (Young Talent Architecture Award) 2016, at the ATT19 Gallery in Bangkok, at the RIBA (Royal institute of British Architects) Live Drawing Marathon and at Mextropoli 2020 in Mexico City among the others.

Hungry observers and compulsive collectors of anthropic mirabilia, they’re interested in all those iconographic gestures that enable the mutual immanence among objects, bodies and rituals. In particular, their work attempts to define peculiar architectural settings for updated gastronomic performances, with the aim of revealing the symbolism behind food preparation and consumption.

They have been teaching together at the AA Summer School since 2016. In 2018 and 2019 they taught as Adjunct Professors at INDA in Bangkok and they’re now programme Heads of the AA Visiting School El Alto (Bolivia).

Their academic research focuses on contemporary forms of conviviality – as a trigger for unconventional spatial languages, between geometrical abstraction and material figurativism.