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Vitrum Shop

Giuseppe Terragni, Vitrum Shop, piazza Duomo 8-9, 1930

Inserted in an “impersonal and ordinary” building, the Vitrum did not go unnoticed by the decisive, geometric cut of the openings and the two different elevations depending on the view: cladding in Apuan cipollino marble on Piazza del Duomo and in asbestos cement panels bound by chrome metal strips on Via Cinque Giornate. A not insignificant part of the exterior is also the Vitrum sign on the façade, in detached letters of black Belgian marble backlit at night, written in those elongated characters that Terragni favoured by using them also in the headings of the project drawings. The most "prominent" aspect was therefore the external windows, which Terragni approached with great care, adding some of the most original furnishings in his production with shelves in crystal and chromed brass. The idea was to "create spaces defined by light-colour", working more on the intangible, on lightness, on variable effects bordering on illusion rather than on matter and stability. The most authentic result of Terragni's shop was that of being a setting, a complete environmental scenography, where the integration and reciprocal commentary between architecture and objects managed to dignify even "common" places and products, removing them from their simple entity. Today only the external part of the Vitrum remains.