Photo courtesy Lea Ceramiche © Andrea Martiradonna


Twirl, an installation by Zaha Hadid Architects on display for two weeks during the 50th anniversary of the Milan Furniture Fair in April, was intended to be a contemporary interpretation of the State University of Milan’s 18th-century courtyard. The architects used Slimtech ceramic slabs from Italian manufacturer Lea Ceramiche to transform the space into a 3-D vortexlike structure. Each slab is composed of two layers of 3-millimeter-thick tiles in seven shades progressing from white to black. “Walking around the installation on both levels [of the loggia], during the day and at night, changes the visitor’s perception of the piece,” says Zaha Hadid Architects project architect Johannes Schafelner. A series of fluorescent tubes — Algoritmo lamps designed by lighting designer/architect Carlotta De Bevilacqua for Artemide — emit light from the center toward the site’s edges. The architects now have the project in storage, but hope it will take a spin in other cities in the near future.