Publisher: Park Books, Editor: Sebastiano Brandolini, ISBN: 9783906027494, Format: Fabric cover, 240pp, 250 x 150mm
Alberto Ponis was born in Genoa in 1933 and studied at Florence University, where he qualified as an architect in 1960. He worked in London with Erno Goldfinger and Denys Lasdun in 1960-64 under the strong-and lasting-influence also of the movements of Modernism and New Brutalism then prevailing in the theoretical discourse in British architecture. His own studio Ponis established in 1964 in Palau, on the Italian island of Sardinia, working since on private, public and urban planning commissions. In 1990 he was awarded the INARCH prize for the Village of Stazzo Pulcheddu in Palau.
Ponis often refers to the natural conditions and the social history of Sardinia when talking about his work in architecture. Besides of nature and society, he has also extensively studied the stazzo, Sardinia's typical rural building type. This thorough knowledge of conditions, traditions and requirements are the foundation of an oeuvre of more than 300 residential buildings. Each of them deeply rooted in its environment and connected with the land and other dwellings by the sentiero, the path leading to and from the house.
Ponis's houses are meant to be summer homes, their inert warmth reflecting the architect's fundamental optimism. They show a natural modesty and simplicity rather than their owner's wealth or status. They express the architect's great formal skills and sensitivity. They are inconceivable without the Sardinian landscape and history and the island seems to have been expecting just these particular buildings, merging naturally with nature.
The new book Alberto Ponis - Sardinia is the first comprehensive monograph on this highly interesting and original yet little known architect. In five lavishly illustrated sections it documents his biography and early work, his extensive research on Sardinia, eight selected buildings created between 1965-98 that make traceable the evolution of Ponis's work, his philosophy ("Thoughts and Forms"), and a concluding essay on the essence of his architecture.