Through the design and fabrication of furniture and objects this studio explored ideas and constructed work equally relevant to larger and more integrated architectures that culminated in the collective installation of a suite of Stanze di Fantasia (Fantasy Rooms) which played host to a virtual Pranzo di Ferraprile (Mid April Lunch) at semester’s end. Students cooked and provided lunchboxes for a senior center in Ypsilanti and hosted an online discussion of their work with the elders.

Working in collaborative teams the studio revisited the joint work of Italian architect, designer Gio Ponti and the artist Piero Fornasetti at the Casa Lucano, popularly known as La Casa di Fantasia.

Acrobatic Experiment Between Surfaces and Volumes: Each collaborative was asked to design and fabricate: a table, a cabinet, a standing screen. Additionally, each student designed and made seating, a vase for flowers and a dish for our pranzo guests.

The studio was also very concerned with the drawings that take place between design and fabrication: The translations from drawing to building.

The design of each object engaged a different set of material and fabrication processes and the integration of a range of levels of craft in regards to larger questions of surfaces, joints, tectonics, proportions, form and space. And equally important: their use both singularly and in combination.




This body of work was greatly inspired by Gio Ponti's moments of unexpected sensory stimulation. Whether an asymmetric table leg that borders on stability, or a razor thin door handle that is energizing to touch, Ponti achieves remarkable sensitivity to the edges, intersections, and surfaces of his architecture. By working iteratively at various scales, I explored conditions of transparency, parallax, and highly detailed material intersections, within a series of three tea tables, vases, and stools. Individually, each piece appears as a unique form from every angle, offering sensations that are familiar but unexpected. As a trio, the tables offer a radially symmetrical seating arrangement, suggesting motion, interaction, and playful.

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