Tell us about yourself. My name is Enrico Fabbri, I’m an architect. I was born in Turin in 1962. There, I first started off drawing large format architectural perspectives freehand. I then worked for Aldo Fogli (architectural design), Carlo L. (urban planning), and Poste Italiane (new layout for post offices – Michele De Lucchi). Currently, I own an architectural firm based in Lugano and Lausanne, where I do Across Design.
Which is to say…? Across Design is my way of inventing. It is a process where sketches and drawings constantly chase each other in order to achieve a goal: making it happen.
Ok. But what do you do, concretely? I draw logos, products, objects, houses and parts of houses. Non-places, too.
Non-places? I’ve happened to plan accommodation areas for private companies and motorsport firms, coffee corners, waiting halls in airports, Formula 1 and Motobike garages.
What else do you draw? Gardens, fountains, buildings, cigarette packets, logos, credit cards, ashtrays, chairs, tables and general furniture; carpets, scarves, jackets; objects of all kinds. I really do not “draw a line”, I don’t set limits: Across Design to me means, pretty much always, to capitalise on previous projects so as to go through new ones which, most of the times, are not at all related.
Interesting… There’s more. We like involving the clients in the making of the project.
Isn’t it what every architect does? It is. Yet for me it has a special meaning: I try to become the client, I sit next to them, I get to know them. We talk about their needs. I try to assess the extent of their imagination, in order to understand what and especially when to put forward the ideas that invariably come to my mind.
It doesn’t look simple. I need the client’s complicity, of course, but past an initial phase of resistance, we set ourselves to work. We support each other in “transgression”, trespassing invention, recreating together.
How? After a while, the client and I blend in, as it were. A few hours later, I start to draw what they have in mind: that’s when we start progressing. The idea takes shape in this original drafting phase. Here you have the best possible way to understand whether an idea will work or will not.
What if it does? If it works on paper, we make it happen.
Sounds beautiful. It is. It’s my way to get as close as possible to the client’s needs. It’s my way to grow up too.
What do you mean? As I said, I don’t set boundaries in my work, but I can’t expect to know everything either. So, if a project demands a skill that I have not developed yet, I cooperate with those who have. By doing so, I push out further and further, until I get across my limits, I Design Across.