Presenting 'Creating Coromandel: Marco Zanuso in South Africa'. Biblioteca dell'Accademia di architettura


Academy of Architecture

Date: 29 September 2022 / 18:30 - 21:00

Biblioteca dell'Accademia di architettura Mendrisio



Creating Coromandel: Marco Zanuso in South Africa
by Edna Peres and Andrea Zamboni


Thursday 29 September 2022 6.30 pm
Biblioteca dell'Accademia di architettura Mendrisio

Welcome Christoph Frank
Introduction Christian Sumi
Presentation of the book Edna Peres, Andrea Zamboni
Panel discussion Nicola Navone, Christian Sumi

Creating Coromandel explores the decade-long partnership between Milanese architect and designer Marco Zanuso (1916–2001) and the South African fashion retailers Sydney Arnold Press (1919–1997) and Victoria de Luria Press (1927–2015), whose shared passion for design spurred them to create the enigmatic home Coromandel in the southern tip of Africa. It continues to inspire a growing number of architects interested in building within a natural context. The farmhouse, which sits in a spectacular valley in Lydenburg, 275km north-east of Pretoria, was built in 1975 and has since developed a cult following for its unusual aesthetic – part building, part ruin, part wilderness. Coromandel House was initiated in 1969, and yielded a decade-long partnership resulting in Coromandel House and also Edgardale (1978), the Press family’s business headquarters. Creating Coromandel is more than an in-depth monograph, offering an alternative syntheses of the bigger context in which weights and hierarchies are redistributed more convincingly. The authors discuss the main themes in the book mainly the design of the house which today are lauded as environmental or sustainable design, as well as the association between the clients, the architect and prominent personalities, including Brazilian landscape architect Roberto Burle Marx (1909–1994) and Italian landscape architect Pietro Porcinai (1910–1986). Creating Coromandel documents Zanuso’s extraordinary skill, but also offers a glimpse into the design process and amount of collaboration it involves. Fans of Zanuso, architects, designers, historians, photographers and anyone interested in design and architecture are invited to attend this presentation of an inspirational story behind the process of building a legacy.
Presentations will be given in Italian and English.