FREE THE OBJECT
to end the tyranny of functionalism
Some words from Andrea Branzi : "Objects are not and have never been just "objects", that is, tools designed to perform simple operations in the context of work or daily life. The small or large 'things' in our homes have always been, since the earliest antiquity, devices on which people have relied to elaborate metaphors and symbolic relationships. This consideration allows us to understand how, even if they were built at the same time and in the same country to meet the same needs, no two "interiors" have ever been identical. In fact, they always correspond to a sort of genetic pattern characterised by (sometimes imperceptible) variations in organisation and functioning, in accordance with criteria deriving not from functional or comfort problems, but from cultural needs that lead to the "uniqueness" of each human habitat. Although they are elements of design, the objects of the home are also "active presences" with which people all over the world have established complex relationships. In this sense, objects are never 'mere objects', defined by a single function or technology, but segments of a human universe made up of relationships, material and immaterial, that remain unrecognized."
Although an architect, Branzi has built very little and is best known in this field for his reflections on the contemporary city and the failure of the modern movement in architecture and the rationalisation of the urban environment, arguing for cities that are less anthropocentric, more open to biodiversity, the sacred and human beauty. He joined the Memphis group with whom he questioned industrial design and sought to free design from the rationalist character imposed by the moderns. He wants to contribute to making design a field of total freedom of expression, freeing the object from the tyranny of utility. Branzi favours the expression of an object through its forms, its sensory qualities, its material, its colour... He blurs the boundaries between art and design.
Andrea Branzi : Objets et Territoires - Constance Rubini - 2014