The Territorial Imagination: Re-visiting the work of Luigi Snozzi (1932-2020) and the Monte Carasso Design Seminar

Matthew Jones

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Like a huge number of architects in the UK and across the world, I was saddened to hear of the recent passing of Luigi Snozzi in December 2020. Snozzi was a charismatic, larger than life character with strong political beliefs that shaped his career. Concerned with architecture?s relationship with people and place he was unafraid of making radical propositions, often designing ?counter proposals? to reveal the inherent contradictions or flaws in competition briefs. He is perhaps best known for his relationship with the town of Monte Carasso - his successful stewardship of the town over a period of more than thirty years. This is one of only a handful of examples of successful long-term collaborations between an architect and a municipality in Europe. It remains an important example of the potential of architecture and urban design to positively transform small settlements, combining a belief in the validity of the European city with an architectural language influenced by the modern movement. The news of Snozzi?s passing took me back to my experience of attending the annual Monte Carasso Design Seminar, led by Snozzi, which I attended fifteen years ago. As a young architecture graduate, this was a formative experience, one which has remained an important touchstone in my work as an architect, affecting also my teaching and research.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)58-67
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Civic Architecture
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished (VoR) - 21 Jun 2021


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