GARDELLA, IGNAZIO. Giulio Carlo Argan, Max Huber [Designer]: IGNAZIO GARDELLA. Milan: Edizioni di Comunita, 1959. Text in Italian and English.

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 IGNAZIO GARDELLA

Giulio Carlo Argan, Max Huber [Designer]

Giulio Carlo Argan, Max Huber [Designer]: IGNAZIO GARDELLA. Milan: Edizioni di Comunita, September 1959. First edition. Parallel text in Italian and English. Quarto. Burlap cloth stamped in red. Photo illustrated dust jacket. 201 pp. 263 images, including plans, diagrams, photographs and color plates. Boards faintly flexed, and mild yellowing to page edges. A previous owner had the foresight to extensively reinforce the dust jacket verso with tape. So the uncommon dust jacket is essentially complete, but a bit ill-fitted from all the tape. A very good copy of a surprisingly scarce title in a good example of the dust jacket.

7.75 x 10.25 hardcover book with 201 pages and 263 images, including plans, diagrams, photographs and color plates.  Book design and typography by Max Huber. The first monograph on the multi-talented Italian architect/designer Ignazio Gardella; includes apartment and office buildings, residences and a variety of public structures, all linked by the architect's inventive integration of Rationalist principles and traditional styles.

Includes work from architecture competitions such as the Extension of the Villa Borletti in Milan [1933-36]; Progetto di concorso per la torre littoria di Piazza del Duomo a Milan [1934]; the Dispensario Antitubercolare di Alessandria [1934-38]; and The Milano-Verde (Green Milan) Plan (with the Casabella group, including Franco Albini, Giuseppe Pagano e Giovanni Romano) [1944 ]. Also includes projects such as the Padiglione d'Arte Contemporanea in Milan [1947]; Case ''Borsalino'' in Alessandria [1952]; Casa alle Zattere in Venice [1953-58];  Mensa Olivetti in Ivrea [1958]; and many others.

Ignazio Gardella [1905 - 1999] was an Italian architect and designer who played an important role in the creation of the Italian Modern Movement. In 1947 he founded the Azucena Agency with Luigi Caccia Dominioni, designing primarily decorative furniture objects.

Gardella also produced an enormous quantity of architecture, always adapting to changing architectural tendencies, often anticipating them, but always containing divergent elements. Gardella is one of the Italian Rationalists, but his use of local construction techniques, like the famous brick screen of the Dispensario in Alessandria (1934–38), makes him in some ways a heretic. In the 1950s he came closer to regionalist currents, but his buildings also maintained an abstraction that distanced them from the most famous works of Neoliberty or Neorealism.

"He was a splendid mix; he had irrepressible natural talent and a faultless drawing hand; he possessed the lively candour of the eternal child; he was a true product of the Swiss School; he loved innovatory research; he boasted a lively curiosity, being quick to latch on - not without irony - to the most unpredictable ideas, and he worked with the serious precision of the first-rate professional." -- Giampiero Bosoni from MAX HUBER  [Phaidon Press, 2006]

Max Huber [1919 - 1992] moved to Milan in order to avoid being drafted into the Swiss army. He worked for Studio Boggeri until Italy joined the war in 1941, forcing Huber to return to his home country where he collaborated with Werner Bischof and Emil Schultness on the influential art magazine 'Du.' As a member of the art group Allianz he exhibits his abstract artwork at the Kunsthaus Zurich with Max Bill, Leo Leuppi, Richard Lohse and Camille Graeser.

After the war Huber returned to Milan where he rubbed shoulders with the postwar Italian intelligentsia [Cesare Pavese, Natalia Ginzburg, Elio Vittorini, Franco Fortini, Ettore Sottsass, Achille Castiglioni and Albe Steiner] all who shared the belief that design had the capacity to restore the human values misplaced during the war.

From 1950 to 1954 Huber worked for the department store La Rinascente, also known as "Elle Erre", the time Albert Steiner was art director of their Advertising Office. The two also worked on the VIII Triennale di Milano. With Achille Castiglioni he designed large-scale installations for RAI, Eni and Montecatini. In 1954 Huber was awarded the prestigious Compasso dπOro and in 1958 he travels to the US as a speaker to the First International Seminar on Typography (New York Art Directors Club).

In 1965 the Nippon Design Committee organized an exhibition of Huber's work at Matsuya Design Gallery in Tokyo. This trip established close ties with Japan that culminated with his marriage to the artist and illustrator Aoi Kono. Kono was instrumental in the development of m.a.x.museo, a museum dedicated to his name and preserving his personal archive, that opened in Chiasso in 2005.

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