In Switzerland, on 12 October 2018 the Theatre of Architecture will open its doors to the public with the exhibition ‘Louis Kahn e Venezia’

The Theatre of Architecture, designed by Mario Botta and promoted by Università della Svizzera italiana and Fondazione Teatro dell’Architettura, is located on the University Campus of the Academy of Architecture in Mendrisio, canton of Ticino. It has been designed to improve the university’s educational offer and to offer a tool for cultural debate on architecture.

The first important exhibition “Louis Kahn e Venezia” (12 October 2018 – 20 January 2019, curated by Elisabetta Barizza and Gabriele Neri) resonates with the characteristics of the new Theatre of Architecture, establishing close ties between the work of Louis Kahn, the city of Venice and the architecture of Ticino. In its geometric strength and essential spatiality, the new building reveals the influence exerted by the American Master on the work of Mario Botta since the 1960s, when the Ticinese architect, then a young undergraduate, collaborated with him on his project for Venice.

Louis Kahn on the roof of Palazzo Ducale, February 1972 [Photo © courtesy of Academy of Architecture - USI]

The Theatre of architecture, with a 27 m diameter circular floor plan and a total surface of 3,000 square meters, is unique; it recalls anatomical theatres and it hosts different spaces suitable for different uses: events, exhibitions (from scenography to design, from fashion to publishing), performances, as well as concerts and conferences.

All cultural events will be open to the public in order to strengthen the foundations of a cultural vocation aimed at the local community. The Theatre of architecture may also act as an interchange platform with other cultural institutions. [Text Arianna Callocchia]