The Dawning City
Florence 1970 - 85
Project for the new Centre of Florence

THE DAWNING CITY   Florence's City Centre is not as nice as they say.
Quite frankly, its most frequented areas are fruit of the end of the Eighteen- hundred and its very clumsy buildings. These have destroyed a very old popular quarter which, in turn, have buried the ancient Etruscan-Roman Florentia This is how the idea came to life. If it were possible to demolish the horrendous buildings dating back to the last century, one would perhaps find the remains, or even just some small fragment or simple trace of the old Florentia. What would remain of the centre of Florence, an empty archaeological site? Certainly not: the proposal aims rather to elaborate the area and the possible findings inside of a new scheme for the centre. This scheme has been thought out in function both of the city life and, more important still, of the city's vocation: destined to be an International Centre of Art.

Taking this as his starting point, Vittorio Mazzucconi has devised a grand contem- porary architectural project to be inserted in the heart of Florence; the task is an extremely difficult and complex one that imposes infinite care as well as a definition of thought. Mazzucconi, himself has investigated on this in his book entitled THE DAWNING CITY (Dedalo editions, 1985).
Some of the topics concerning this Philosophy are:

  • the awareness of the current historical moment that we face, the beginning of a new civilisation, and the attempt to outline its main principles.
  • the existing relationship between the world's culture and Florence's spirit, (from its Etruscan roots right up to the Renaissance) shows the development of its original identity, whereas it has always had the tendency to universalise. Florence has always been destined to be the world's school, as far as art goes.
  • the world's crisis, of identity, of values, its booming chaos and the necessity to outline a field of action, in which to re-found the very city and our civilisation on new ideals.
  • the role that the young people must assume in this re-foundation. , and hence their education or, rather, their self-teaching. The Dawning City is, therefore, a city for the young.
  • On the other hand, the Dawning City was devised in the image of Man's psiche and as an internal quest: from the journey, to the Father, to the child in each of us, towards the conquest of an awareness, to the unveiling of the Superior Being that we all bear inside - the Self - to the cross, seen as a universal symbol of totality and holiness.
    The latter, inside the Dawning City, is felt to be both the fundamental layout from which the ancient high priests founded the city, as well as the most beautiful fruit of an opus which expands in a spiral of new harmony around the cross.
  • Along side these considerations, there is another challenge with our habitat that requires most urgent attention in cities such as Florence: traffic, invasion on behalf of tourism, the role of a City of Art, the inadequacy of structures of all kind. Thus the idea of a grand metropolitan area, in which to situate and integrate the function of the ancient city of Florence, is brought forward.
  • to finish, the maturity that allows us to have a new and creative broad-eye view of these problems. The history, the archaeology, the art, the psychology, today's emergencies, the technologies, are melted into one in an olistic approach, which also contemplates a fusion between past, present and future.
Exhibition: Piazza della Repubblica, Florence
April-May 1998

The project of a glass Pyramid to be erected in Piazza della Repubblica in Florence, to host the Exhibition of
"The Dawning City"