Archive for November, 2010

Copacabana Promenade, Rio De Janeiro, Roberto Burle Marx, Brasil

Few years ago when I was a student yet, my professor of city planning told us about his dear friend who had recently died, his friend was a brasilian landscape architect called Roberto Burle Marx.
My professor knew him when he wrote a book about the beautiful gardens designed by him.

Truly I witnessed a wonderful lesson and I saw the gardens so beautiful and so loved by the Brazilian people. One in particular struck my attention, not because it was more beautiful than others, because they were all beautiful, but because I had already seen it but I didn’t remember where.
I was particularly impressed by the Copacabana Promenade in Rio De Janeiro where there is a pavement landscape in large scale (4 kilometres long).
It was completed in 1970 and has used a black and white Portuguese pavement design since its origin in the 1930s: a geometric wave.

Copacabana Promenade, Rio De Janeiro, Brasil

Where did I see it?
I dug into my memory when I was a kid and I watched many cartoons … and I finally remembered where.
I saw it in the 6th animated feature produced by Walt Disney called Saludos Amigos, in the 4th segment Aquarela do Brasil (or “Watercolor of Brazil”) where a brand-new character, José Carioca, showed Donald Duck around South America and introduced him to the samba.

Copacabana Promenade, Portuguese Pavement


Palazzo Massimo alle Colonne, Rome

Last weekend I was in Rome as a tourist for a quick and enjoyable holiday.
When I was walking from Campo de’ Fiori (where I just had a great sandwich) to Pantheon, I suddenly found it on my left and I immediately was reminded of its peculiarities that no one knows.

Palazzo Massimo alle Colonne

The Palazzo Massimo alle Colonne is a Renaissance palace designed by Baldassarre Peruzzi in 1532-1536 on a site of three contiguous palaces owned by the old Roman Massimo family and built after arson destroyed the earlier structures during the Sack of Rome (1527).
The entrance is characterized by a central portico with six Doric columns, paired and single. Inside there are two courtyards, of which the first one has a portico with Doric columns as a basement for a rich loggia, which is also made of Doric columns. The recessed entrance portico differs from typical palazzo models such as exemplified by the Florentine Palazzo Medici.

Few people know the building is developed in only 2 / 3 of the façade, the designer included a small portion of the adjacent building on the left to create symmetry on entry as well as all of us now see.

Palazzo Massimo alle Colonne, Plan