The House of Senses


The ‘Hybrid Design and Architecture’ exhibition at Milan Design Week, co-produced by BE OPEN and Interni Magazine, featured the work of internationally-renowned designer Cristophe Pillet who presented his ‘House of Senses’ at the Universita Statale.

The construction was his realization of the ‘Hybrid Design’ brief —incorporating the juxtaposing elements of indoor/outdoor, natural and technological, real and virtual, historical with modern and the concrete and intangible elements of creation. ‘The House of Senses’ also illustrated the extended mission of BE OPEN to explore Sensory Design as a precept, encouraging designers to use their capabilities to create through the five senses en route to discovering more about the existence of and the uses for the sixth sense, or intuition. 

‘The House of Senses’ appeared as a simple shelter, with exterior surfaces a play of anthracite wood, sod and vines, while inside, a spectacle loop by video artists from Studio Azzurro inhabited the walls with an epiphany of moving pictures and designs that would suggest early surrealist cinema, and the stream of consciousness rhythms that are so prevalent in our daily co-existence with electronic devices.

Studio Azzuro was founded in 1982, the pioneer days of video, by Fabio Cirifino with Leonardo Sangiorgi and Paulo Rosa. Their image edit for ‘The House of the Senses’ resulted in a whirlwind of spectacular and luminous visuals which led the viewer on an emotional and sensorial journey, even while standing still. The effect of the screened images, set at asymmetrical angles and reflected also from the floor and ceiling, was a sensational recollection without detail.