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Castle of Venosa

Integrated project of improvements for the valorisation of the Castle

  • Client:
  • Year:
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  • Team:
    archt. F. Russo (team leader), archt. R. Russo, archt. A. Trisolini, eng. E. Ghigliozzi
  • Consultants:
    DZ engeneering s.r.l., Goppion s.p.a.
  • Location:
    Venosa (PT) - Italy

The final design put in tender by the Regional Directorate for Cultural Heritage and Landscape of Basilicata poses organisational - productive problems relative to the new museum concepts, to the choice of materials used, and to the same typology of "military architecture" monument, put in Italy and in the South of Italy. The improvement proposed takes into account and confirms the six sections scheduled in the path of the exhibition and its related contents, reorganizing the space for greater usability and interpretation of exhibits (also for a possible and consecutive lot), as well as an aesthetic and architectural value without neglecting any detail.
The architectural complex takes on a different spatial quality in comparison to that of the final design through the new texture of the terracotta tiles floor that enhances the radiality and linearity of the exhibition spaces
Inside the fortified towers are redrawn the division of the vaults through the differentiation of the terracotta listels: in the spans it is proposed a linear motif of listels perpendicular to the curtain wall, whereas between the one nave and the other the frame assumes the form of a herringbone pattern.
Along the galleries the pavement works, instead, on the lengthways of the space to confer more depth. It confirms the terracotta tiles floor but with size 15x30 h 2.5 aged handcrafted for better appearance integration and fiber-reinforced to improve the carrying capacity, forasmuch as it will bear the weight of museum showcases, which generally have a weight of about 400-500 kg.
The texture of the new pavement serves as matrix of the new distribution: in the fortified towers are placed, in addition to the bell-shaped showcases, the panels for the communication and exhibition along the walls with a gap of 10 cm from them. The expositive panels are modular since composed of three panels of different sizes and removable so as to give greater compositional flexibility to the spaces and a reading of the architectural structures.
The panels, entirely of plate glass, will be treated with films that emphasize transparency and therefore the relationship with the monument. The improvement also consist in making self-supporting panels, with a basic structure in sheet steel stove-enamelled with epoxy powders  and then with no hooks to the masonry.
These panels are separated from the multi-touch reading stand which is composed of a maximum of 84 cm height in galvanised sheet structure so as to be searchable by the majority of users (old people, children, people with disabilities) and equipped with a multi-screen -touch for communication of the contents and a panel with Braille engraving for blind visitors. The two tunnels galleries instead are made up of a space divided by a series of exposed beams surmounted by fretted metal sheet, all of a green color, and that in the final design are covered with shiny oleosynthetic enamel.
It intends to recreate that space distribution through the use of REI 120 plasterboard panels, painted with white plain color and leaving only to view the base of the h-girders in order to perceive the space as a "continuum". This solution also allows to eliminate the visible wall mounted wiring and lighting, as provided in the final desing, and any disturbance of cables along the walls both vertically and horizontally.
The depth of the galleries is enhanced by inserting glass panels for holographic projections that give continuity to the museum space, " a continuous exhibition itinerary" without creating visual interruptions. The projections are made through video projectors that are placed within soffits designed specifically so that users do not perceive their presence.