A room within a room

With the true-to-the-original reconstruction of a large part of the "Casa Lana", the Triennale in Milan pays tribute to the work of the architect and designer Ettore Sottsass.

"Casa Lana" has been moved: In 1965, Ettore Sottsass (1917 – 2007) designed the interior of the Milan flat for his friend Giovanni Lana. Little budget, little space - that was the initial situation, which Sottsass solved with numerous ideas for flexible storage possibilities and a multifunctional use of furnishings. To this end, he created a semi-open "room within a room" with the help of wooden structures and assigned different uses to the structure in parallel. This created protected as well as communicative areas, which he marked with the help of coloured surfaces. Thanks to the omission of corridors, the space appears spacious despite the subdivisions. With the precisely designed interior, Ettore Sottsass created a solution for small rooms that is still relevant today. True to the original, the "Casa Lana" is a testimony to its time, which was at the same time ahead of its time.

A large part of the visionary interior design can now be seen permanently at the Triennale Milan. This is primarily thanks to the donation of Sottsass' widow Barbara Radice Sottsass, a design critic who was also one of the founding members of the internationally renowned Memphis Group. "Milan is now home to an authentic time machine, created by one of the international geniuses of the twentieth century", says Stefano Boeri, President of the Milan Triennale. The permanent installation is accompanied by a series of temporary exhibitions that refer to the central themes of the "Casa Lana". The exhibition "Struttura e colore", which includes paintings, drawings, photographs and objects and focuses on the relationship between space and man, marks the start. The following shows in 2022 and 2023 will be dedicated, among other things, to Ettore Sottsass' long-standing collaboration with the Italian industrial brand Olivetti and the narrative power of his works.