Florentine Gino Coppedè


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Italian master of the Stile Liberty. He designed the extraordinary Neo-Gothic Castello Mackenzie (1896–1906), the wildly Mannerist Palazzo Zuccarino (1907), and several big family tombs in as well as the entrance (1904) to the English cemetery at the Staglieno, all in Genoa. He was responsible for the brilliant Quartiere Coppedè, around the Piazza Mincio, Rome (1921–7), in which he demonstrated how new urban fabric can have a richness of decorative treatment as interesting as anything in the older parts of the city: this he achieved by a collage of features and imagery from various periods and in different styles to give his buildings a kind of fictional history, as well as a humane scale, which has been enough to prompt the labelling of his work as ‘irrelevant’ and ‘not of today’, despite its obvious success. His brother, Adolfo, with Dario Carbone, designed the Neo-Baroque Palazzo Borsa, Genoa (1907–12), and was also responsible for the Casa del Fascio, Signa, Florence (1928).

Architecture (Nov. 1984), 76–8;Capellini & Poleggi (1998);Etlin (1991);Gavin Stamp

Subjects: Architecture.

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