Italian architect Renzo Piano could rightly be called the master of museum design — certainly in the U.S., where he’s designed for a number of major institutions including the Whitney, the Kimbell, and more. Recently, Metropolis magazine’s Paul Clemence sat down with Piano “to talk about the creative process, criticisms, contemporary architecture, and ‘flying’ buildings.” When Clemence asks why it is that Piano’s buildings emphasize their connections with the city around them, the architect offers a great response:
But that’s because I am Italian. The city is under your skin—as an Italian you grow up with this idea that cities are places where buildings talk to each other. There’s a dialogue between the building and the street. It’s about accessibility, it’s about civic life. An urban person is a person that knows how to behave with civility, how to share, how to be accessible. A building should be like that. It should talk to the city, talk to the people. Buildings like this allow people to share experiences together, to enjoy and share life. Speaking together is a form of acceptance and the beginning of tolerance, which is the secret of civic life.
Read the rest of the interview over at Metropolis.
Image: Courtesy Whitney Museum.