Il design spiegato a mia madre: Fabio Novembre at TEDxLecce


Good Evening Entrepreneurship and innovation put into simple words means “New Enterprises” It’s somehow like going back to epics
we need knights and important ventures I made an epic effort some years ago when I
tried to explain my job to my mother With my book I intended to explain design
to the most difficult interlocutor each time you try and make
serious conversation with mothers the reaction is often a smile and
an offer to prepare something to eat so any important thing you try to tell her
is really an epic and knightly venture but nonetheless it is very important
to try and explain what you do when you design a table with 175 legs,
for example, and you concentrate on what happens under the table
you must try and explain on what happens under the table
you must try and explain to your mother as to any consumer why you
are making a table with 175 legs of which only four load bearing
and the other 171 are soft or when you take an archetype of design
like the 1967 Panton chair which as a student I considered to be something like a theoretical limit I thought it was impossible to improve it and
I would never design a better chair then I realized that to improve it I would simply
need to
give it a sex, so it became a humane figure Not only “Her” but also “Him”
two chairs that were humanized Not only “Her” but also “Him”
two chairs that were humanized and tried to kiss,
to tell a story through a kiss I believe our country is romantic
we should probably have a slogan like Fall in love! Then, we are the inventors of the square, this, for
example, is a square seen on Google Earth I tried to transform this square into an object
simply because as an architect So trying to reduce it in a 1 to 250 scale
only represented theoretical reasoning A provocation so as to bring it back
to the centre of our talks I was born in 1966 and I did everything in squares
I would court young ladies or play football especially in the squares of this city, Lecce
with the façade of Santa Croce I was born here, in the city of poor Baroque
not the Roman Baroque of Bernini and Borromini but a Baroque of artisans
where churches were decorated finely And I think these origins will always be present When
at university they taught us that
“less is more” Maybe this is my idea of less It’s a totally complex and abstruse less
related to genetics and to one’s origins So even if it’s only a shoe shop
that they ask me to design and the theoretical principle is a 14” wide shelf
simply to put a shoe on it this for me becomes a vector
a band moving in space and wrapping it up so this is what happens with
the monochromatism of the stone of Lecce and the past inevitably arises
as it flows in your blood Evolution is not linear, it’s dynamic
we live in a complex world When the city of Milan hosted
my first monographic exhibition entitled “Teach me the freedom of swallows”
It was exactly
complex like the flight of a swallow, which is impossible to follow or decipher
but which is inspirational for poetical flings Then I would like to tell you about my
relation with the city that welcomed me I was born in Lecce, but live in Milan Which
offered me to represent it at the 2010 Shanghai Expo
so I started exactly from its emblem a red cross representing aristocracy
on a white background representing populace But if you have to present a city
you evidently question your values I firmly believe, in fact,
that bloods rights are not valid anymore it is land rights that are valid today And to
represent the city of Milan I called the creative aristocracy that in time
stratified this city I used Boccioni, Leonardo Da Vinci, Lucio Fontana,
who was Argentinian but developed his special concept in Milan So aristocracy became creative and went to tell its
story on the international stage of Shangai I believe in centripetal force
in the attractive strength of the project As Lucio Fontana cut a canvas
and you felt swallowed up by it in the same way
I designed a sofa based on one module which repeated infinitely
becomes something like a genetic code the name of this sofa is AND
but if you read it backwards its DNA it’s that genetic code which is within us
When I imagine myself tearing my chest
I don’t think I would find my heart I imagine finding a flower
and this is another exposition I did in Milan If you think about the flower in the life of artists
it has always been a very important element because flowers are good and beautiful,
the question is that they are only perceived on a level of pure aestheticism, but it’s actually
what triggers the reproductive process of nature So at the Triennale I set up this exposition
made up of different layers of petals in which you found my projects.
And it was exactly what happens when insects are attracted by flowers,
pollen attaches to their wings and it is spread around in the surroundings
activating the process we call natural reproduction So I wanted this to happen
transforming humans into insects I believe humans are the core of everything Only the fact of standing up is a challenge It’s
the challenge to the imposed condition of gravity As we balance our weight on our feet
our attitude is challenging we become the masters of the animal world
simply because we have this ability of altering the conditions that surround us
and we try to give sense to things Again, humans are the core of everything
See the armchair or the vase In the end, do we really need vases today?
And yet we still design them Simply because we need objects to
Keep us company and represent memories When I design interiors like this restaurant in Milan with
these arms of a God named Shu from the Egyptian Book of the Dead
which support the vault of the room or this apparel shop in London where
the entrance is through these female legs something which every man
commits to in lifetime So we get to the fact that
some time ago an Australian magazine asked me to use images to summarize my ideas
on design, art and architecture so I asked my wife to undress
I said “please my love…” Her legs are an absolute functional shape at university
they teach that Design is just this Her legs are an absolute functional shape at university
they teach that Design is just this Then there’s Architecture
and everything starts from this image Just think of the “origin du monde”
Our memory related to space is totally uterine This is our idea of architecture
entirely related to the feminine body and then comes Art
an adipose pad And this must be revolutionary for all of you because a
work of art cannot be external to you which simply serves to rest the sacrum
on sitting surfaces which becomes the desired object
of every man and cannot be other than art it is exactly that triple back flip which
art executes each time the observer approaches this does not interest me because I’ m a sex fiend but
because in history they have all been sex fiends This is the most important design exposition which has ever
been organized on Italian design, in 1972 at the Museum of Modern Art in New York
and on its poster there are a man, dressed with a complete suit,
and a completely naked woman and I say this because it’s art history here
we have Piero Manzoni and Carlo Mollino two magnificent fellow artists
who took these naked bodies and by signing them,
promoted them to works of art or going even more back in time
with Tiziano and his “Venere di Urbino” simply taking women and making them lie down art’s
back flip is to call them Venuses that is to start from a femininity of a normal person
but promoting it to a rank of goddess and this is exactly the process of art
and furthermore I can add that there is someone who made me think
his name is Carmelo Bene I heard him at a one vs all
on an Italian TV show where in a terrible context he said something
which paralyzed the audience: “Don’t break my balls! I don’t make art, I am
art! So anything I do is consequently art” It is simply something you must take possession of so by
designing this sofa I don’t do anything else but invite you to sit down with the
represented divinity
and become one, a “tableau vivant” to be a work of art yourself
something we should all do and this is related to the sofas
which I designed in 2003 when my wife left me and
I fell in a period of total depression during which I realized that loneliness is
nothing but some sort of golden cage which surrounds us and in which nothing else fits and
is bound by an opaque black volume so you realize that this design
only gives space to one it is solitude design
they are chairs of solitude this golden cage which can contain us
and nothing else And which is the limit? That there is no
evolution if we only talk of oneself And if you think about it,
it’s also a linguistic problem “I” is a part of “US”
“US” is “I” to the nth degree So even when I designed an ordinary thing
like a trade show stand I made a pop manifesto
a display of love so I had all tourists in this trade fair
taking photographs at this monument or when they asked me to design a handle
which was very difficult for me simply because I hate doors
it was completely against my principles so it became the most essential and spare handle a
simple cylinder from which material is removed and the shape of a heart is defined
and I called it “Love opens doors” because it is exactly this I want to go back to,
to the impossible venture and the epic poem as Ludovico Ariosto when he starts the Orlando Furioso:
“Mistresses, knights, arms and love, what else?” Him and her, arms, instruments and love
love in simply everything when I designed this shoe shop I thought of the
shoelace lost by the princess I was chasing I even imagined a horse
because as a knight I needed a horse Think of when we have to measure
the power of a Ferrari engine we still refer to horse power
we are modern, but absolutely aged We don’t do much more than interpret things
with parameters we bear inside profoundly And this is why I see myself like this So which are the impossible ventures today? I decided this
when I became father of two children When they cut the umbilical cord of a little girl
Her tie with ther mother is cut and another tie is created with breath Breath is nourished by the photosynthesis
And by the plants that surround us a real knight today has to fight for a green economy
he must protect trees this is a vase I created for existing trees
where you must act as a guard And when they asked me to do something in Milan to
dissuade from parking and add green on a road I designed what you see in the photographs or when I
designed my house
I designed it with a special tree the apple tree, the forbidden tree of the Eden
because I am convinced of the fact that if there was really an obstacle
that wasn’t really Paradise if you have a denial of your rights
that can’t be Paradise and here is a gem for you:
when Steve Jobs created that logo he did it with a bitten apple he didn’t
care about all the Jewish Christian stories simply because with a whole circle
it seemed like a cherry and that accidentally became
the symbol of men’s free will that apple is made to be bitten and the one
next to it is my studio’s logo I believe that the meaning of my job Is
to create places to fall in love to create objects that make you fall in love So
I needed a Cupid to represent me A cupid which in these times of total confusion
needs the
precision of a rifle instead of bow and arrow So this is how I imagine women, harmonious and gorgeous
whereas I imagine men exactly like this The word concept comes from the latin “concipere”
Which means to get containers ready This is why I represented men like this
I imagine them with these banal slots But it is inevitable that you need a man
and a woman to have a baby when I tried to design a house
I put a fetus inside it It is evident that whoever works
in the fields of entrepreneurship and innovation cannot consider an image more remarkable than this
a pregnant woman is a new enterprise She is the real challenge to face the future
and men, who are inferior beings, can only try and imitate through empathy
that process that women have always known through a feeling that goes
beyond sympathy or antipathy trying to be in harmony with others trying to avoid
being in favor or against but being simply with

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