(Preliminary design,

definitive design,

site supervision)



700 sqm



Fabrizio Marchesi




La Triennale di Milano presents the strong and scenographic exhibition “La città fragile” curated by Aldo Bonomi, design by AquiliAlberg. After La città infinita (2003), La rappresentazione della pena (2006), and La vita nuda (2008) the exhibition focuses on fragility and fear that affects people who are overwhelmed by a modernisation that breaks the references of community and family, that used to ensure the passing of values from one generation to the next.

The exhibition, through photographic documents, video, illustrations, maps and relevant statistical data, seeks to represent some aspects of the fragility of the present-day city. It highlights the relationship between the resenting community, which is closed in and looks for a scapegoat, and the caring community, which seeks to assume responsibility for social weaknesses, in a hard-working community, and acts in a privileged way in regard to production and work.


The design of the exhibition aims to translate its content into architecture that interacts with it, to create a fusion that stages the fragile city. The exhibit is divided into three main parts: the fragility located on the left side, the care community on the right side, and the rancorous community that runs down the central area. The exhibition therefore is not only a host of the content, but also an architectural transposition of the content. Going into detail of each of these three components, the fragilities have been interpreted as actual deconstructed volumes composed of splintered fragments, and channeled through videos, photographs, passages and data, to develop themes related to their fragility. On the other hand, the outer surface of these volumes is reflective to allow the visitor to be mirrored, in order to rediscover themselves in the exhibit and to consider that what they see in the shards could be experienced by them in some way in their present or in their future. The spaces are deliberately disorientating, narrow, long and incumbent, with sloping surfaces that accentuate the drama of the content. All the shards are sliced on the top by a single inclined plane, and gradually increase in volume as you travel through the exhibition. A unique and strong gesture perceived by the eye as one enters the space. The care community on the right side, unfolds in a continuous band made of linear modules, illustrating in their steps the work of the care community. In the central spine, between the care community band, and the shards of fragility, the path is obstructed by six unpredictably tilted bolts, representing the rancorous. Binding powerfully into space from above (and below) with their 6 meter height, illustrating disturbing messages displayed through images, videos, and phrases. They try to obstruct the path, but instead their volume casts a red shadow on the ground that spreads to reach all the components involved. A sort of ‘fil rouge’ that sews and connects all the elements, embracing the videos in the shards located on the left side, and translating into graphic lines in the care community located on the right, ultimately developing into a three dimensional volume creating the pavilion of enlightenment. Here the architectural and graphic language merges, and the last of the six bolts, sheds its color before being incorporated. The shards come together, and the care community is integrated to create a unique space dedicated to public meetings, screenings, and assemblies, to complement and conclude the conceptual route.