Riccardo Dalisi

(Italy, 1931)

In the early 1970s, Riccardo Dalisi led a series of “workshops,” on the streets, with children from the working class neighborhood of Traiano in Naples, that activated processes of precarious development through a “poor technique” (Tecnica povera). Architecture is defined as “the experience of space,” in a crisis of the object where only usage and appropriation matters. Dalisi distributed models by his students from architecture school made out of poor materials, to the children, certain illustrating the principles of structural compression or traction behavior. Being a participative instrument the model becomes a tool for an ‘architecture of unpredictability’, an economy of “creative disorder” rooted in the experience itself. These spatial experiments thus embody the quintessence of radical architecture as an ‘architecture of relationships’, between the individual and collective, between the object and its cultural environment, in which theory and praxis are inseparable.