Add It Up

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Architect, GIF

Add It Up

La Macchina Studio 


Add it up – how to emerge from the lagoon

Add it up! envisions an adaptive and incremental development of the area of Porto Marghera. Following abandonment and decommissioning of the first industrial factory, it is expected to be rehabilitated by activities with high regenerative potential, able to reactivate the surrounding urban pattern.


The Scenic Machine

Restoring infrastructure and ecological networks, starting from the implementation of what exists to a rebalance of the ecosystem equilibrium, bringing to zero the ratio of resources consumed and produced energy. The structure is self-sufficient and can continue to grow.

On the ashes of the ferocious exploitation of the lagoon, the new city will rise: collective, additional, metabolist, productive, bold, striking, whose towers will rise outsize. They have the task to shape new backgrounds, embody new symbols as monuments able to accelerate the processes of urbanization.

La Macchina_PLAY UP_1

The new city is not growing in the wake of isolated and individual creative expression but from community decisions, in the exercise of real aspirations of a clearer definition of its identity.

La Macchina_PLAY UP_2



Who influences you graphically?

Our favourite exercise – with an evident surrealist inspiration – in the composition of our images, is the exquisite corpse game, a form of cooperative art allowing the composition of collages made up of different fragments, having at first no mutual connection, yet creating a dormant, unexpected and surprising message, when put together. Besides the artistic scene of the first half of the XX century – whose method, more than results, we are interested in – we are fascinated both by the prophetic radical avant-gardes and by the later architecture trends which tried to reject them, including the international architecture of last decade, which saw their fulfilment.


What is the power of the animated image- how does it affect the way we perceive the drawing and or how does it help in unfolding a narrative/detail?

The GIF format is one of the oldest in the web and it has lately been included in social network users’ everyday language. We like using the animated image because we find it helpful in offering a more detailed reading of the project, while – unlike the video – it compels us to carry out an exceptional condensation and focus on the most important elements to highlight.

The animated image inevitably focuses on one or more features of the composition, it can show an otherwise invisible detail or offer a different point of view.

Loop animations show a surreal reality, where only some details are moving inside a mainly static picture. This creates a contradiction as the action taking place in time is endlessly repeating but with no development.


The Monument is The City, the City is The Monument

How do the images relate to the notion of a clearer image definition of an identity?

In this case, our identity coincides with the identity of the project itself and its definition comes up through the six represented sceneries.

We indulged in mashing up architecture, cinema, music, literature, painting, sculpture and photography, to create complex and contradictory sceneries, which would be deeply connoted scenic designs, while expressing our ideas, our world.

The definition of identity is the means between the spectator and the project and it makes the latter real, though using a surreal language.

What defined the title?

Titles help the narration. They are hints or quotes, sometimes revealing references hidden behind the pictures or the project.

 “Nothing is great or little otherwise than by comparison” is a quote from Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’sTravels we regarded as fit to deal with the topic of gigantism and the scale relationships between Venice and Porto Marghera.

“Sacred Conversation” is a reference to the work by Piero Della Francesca “Sacred Conversation with Mary and the Baby, Six Saints, Four Angels and the Donor Federico da Montefeltro”, known as Pala di Brera.

In our picture we decided to recall its composition to symbolize the rebirth of the area.

“Space Drama” refers to Kubrick’s“2001: A space Odyssey”.


Space Drama

It’s a hint to the vocation we hold to be the best for that area and for its industrial facilities, which are suitable to be converted into technology and research hubs, as it has already been the case with the Venice Gateway for Science and Technology (VEGA).

“Future Belongs to Everyone” is again a reference to cinema. We wanted to quote Cuaròn’s masterpiece “Children of Men”.  The film foretells a dystopian future where the human race, struck by sterility, is doomed to extinction, until a woman finds herself pregnant, lighting up a new hope. Likewise, an area deeply damaged by industrial exploitation as Porto Marghera can come to life again.


The future belongs to everyone

“The Scenic Machine” is a pun revealing our admiration for Aldo Rossi whose drawings, similar to collages, show urban landscapes resembling scenic designs.

“The Monument is the City, The City is the Monument” again refers to the issue of scale relationships.

The area of Porto Marghera is much larger than Venice and its industrial facilities are huge. The project imagines they grow even larger, potentially endlessly.  Over a certain scale buildings become monuments and they must represent the culture of the city. Anyway, the monument is not meant in its historical and celebrative sense, but as an architectural product which is revitalizing and can accelerate urban development.

The graphic qualities of the images hint to a story _ how could that format be used to present the images?

Each picture represents a feature of the project we wanted to stand out. This happens through the reference to some episode taken from our cinematographic or literary culture, to create a metaphorical link with the project. It is the metaphor itself which keeps together the fragments of a storytelling that is surreal, yet possible.



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