HEADQUARTER SNAIDERO RINO, MANGIAROTTI DESIGN
In 1973 Snaidero decided to enlarge the factory in Majano.
The building covered an area of one hundred thousand square metres, all completely roofed: departments, stores, canteen and social services area. One thousand three hundred persons worked in it; and at the same time new offices were opened in Paris, London and Zurich.
“Founding this company was my act of rebellion against the poverty of my region which forced people to cross the frontiers and look for jobs in other countries. Maybe my reaction against the past social conditions is the secret of this company.” In 1975 Rino Snaidero commissioned Angelo Mangiarotti to design the office complex. The decisions made by this man of Friuli have always been pondered. The architect had been a professor at the Institute of Technology of Chicago. He took part in the competition for the city ioop in 1953—54. He knew Frank Lloyd Wright, Walter Gropius, Mies van der Rohe, Konrad Wachsmann. When he came back to Italy he set up a studio together with B. Morassutti, with whom Collaborated until 1960. His studies were mostly on the problems of prefabrication. He had been one of the most estimated figures of fine design in Milan.
Apart from his professional activity, he taught abroad a great deal, where he presented his projects at conferences and exhibitions. In 1963—64, he taught at the Istituto Superiore di Disegno Industriale in Venice, organized seminaries with one-man exhibitions at Vienna University in 1 965, at the University of Zveva ArKtektov Slovenije of Lubjana, at Zurich University, and at the Delftsch Bouwkunding Students Gezelschap of Deift in 1966. He was professor at the Ecole Politécnique Federal of Lausanne and at the South Australian Institute of Technology of Adelaide, in the same year that he was commissioned by Snaidero. The forward-looking industrialist and the famous architect of Milan soon got on well together. Mangiarotti decided on a structure which “is to be understood through the four supporting piers with circular sections, made of ferroconcrete.
The roofing is of crossed beams from which descend the tie beams on which the floor is hung, with a five-metre opening in the long side, and seven in the others. The wide central, empty space has an excellent spatial distribution, but must be understood as a consequence of the building process adopted. The front panels aren’t bearing, of course, and because of the construction material and perforated treatment, it recalls a huge drape.”
This was the description by Enrico Bona of the interior and exterior of the great mushroom, in his monograph Mangiarotti. Building was begun.
CRUSCOTTO KITCHEN, MANGIAROTTI DESIGN
Rino Snaidero wanted to keep in contact with Angelo Mangiarotti. So the architect designed Cruscotto, the prototype of which was shown at the MoMA of New York.
“The simple basic idea was to help solve the ergonomic distribution of the working functions. The kitchen appliances were ailconcentrated in a single place, which gave its name to the model. This solution enabled a better concentration of the other functions to be achieved.
Cruscotto is composed of two distinct functions: one is the working area, the other is the storage and living space. They are set in a C-shaped structure in which there aren’t handles.