Architect and urban planner-theorist Carlo Aymonino died on 3 July 2010. Born in Rome in 1926, Aymonino attended university and began his career in the city, debuting professionally with a collaborative design for a neo-realist apartment complex on the Via Tiburtina in 1949.
A dedicated city dweller with a commitment to functionality, Aymonino was also a vigorous theorist and academic, serving as an editor for Il contemporaneo from 1954 and as a member of the faculties of architecture at both the University of Rome and the Istituto Universitario di Architettura in Venice through the 1960s and ‘70s.
Aymonino gathered his reflections on designs for urban living in Origini e sviluppo della città moderna (The Origins and Development of the Modern City) (1965). While a 1959 proposal for a new National Library of Rome remained a sketch, the next decades saw the realization of the Gallaratese 2 housing development in Milan’s Monte Amiata district (1962) and the University of Florence (1971).
One of Aymonino’s last projects was the design for a new wing of the Capitoline Museum in Rome, which opened in 2005, housing the larger-than-life-size equestrian monument to Marcus Aurelius. One side of the hall leaves exposed the original elements of the sixth century BCE Temple of Jove. Moved several times from outdoors to a plinth created by Michelangelo to a plastic encasement, the horse and rider now loom over the sunken floor of the glass-covered hall.
Reference: Mercedes Daguerre. “Aymonino, Carlo.” Grove Art Online. Oxford Art Online. Oxford University Press.
Carlo Aymonino, Hall housing the Equestrian Statue of Marcus Aurelius, Capitoline Museum, Rome, Italy 2005. Art on File, artonfile.com.
Carlo Aymonino, Detail, Hall housing the Equestrian Statue of Marcus Aurelius, Capitoline Museum, Rome, Italy 2005. Art on File, artonfile.com.
Carlo Aymonino, Exterior, Addition to Capitoline Museum, Rome, Italy 2005. Art on File, artonfile.com.
Carlo Aymonino, Unrealized design for the National Library, Rome, 1959. Centre Georges Pompidou Library, Paris, France.
Carlo Aymonino, Design for Monte Amiata housing development Gallaratese 2, Milan, 1967-1974. Centre Georges Pompidou Library, Paris, France.