A Closer Look: Carlo Scarpa

Carlo Scarpa (1906-1978) is my favorite architect.  He was a master of timeless proportion and detail.  But he was also an inventor – creating works that are constantly surprising, and seem fresh even decades after his death.  It seems he never designed anything the same way twice.

His work was modern in style, but what made him unique among modernists was his reverence for traditional materials and crafsmanship.  Born in Venice, many of his projects are located there, and blend its history seamlessly with the present.

During his lifetime, Scarpa’s decorative style became a model for architects wishing to revive the use of craft and beautiful materials in their work.

I love his buildings for their beautiful forms.  Scarpa was a master of techtonic formsin his buildings, volumes and planes seem to constantly slip past one another, giving movement to the heaviest of materials.

I am also intrigued by the details he designed into every project – from masterfully-designed museum pedestals to careful juxtapositions of materials.

His masterpiece is the Brion Cemetery near Treviso, Italy.  This complex incorporates some of the best examples of his architecture and landscape design.

Scarpa’s work has a timeless beauty.  I hope you’ll take a closer look and see how it speaks to you.


image 1 &5: fakebuildings.blogspot.com

image 2: wvcarch64.wordpress.com

image 3 &4: flickr

image 5: brookegiannetti.typepad.com