Adriano Olivetti, the “Italian Rathenau”, was the author of an ambitious industrial plan that had no equals in the productive scenario of the country, managing to balance between the scientific organization of the work, proposed by the models of Fordism and Taylorism, and the social issues that focused primarily on the working class conditions. A new conception of production spaces, an original configuration for the underdeveloped Italian context, was crucial for the fulfilment of Adriano’s plan: he conceived a factory as a cosy place which was able to accommodate the arrangement of new assembly lines, experimented by the company located in Ivrea near Turin, and to guarantee at the same time comfortable and suitable spaces for the workers. With a view to subverting the mechanistic alienation induced by the Taylorism, well stigmatized by Chaplin in his movie “Modern Times”, Adriano assigned a key role to architecture and in particular to the proposals of Modern Movement, that could support the conception and the development of a new form of factory. These are the reasons that led to the construction of the new complex in Ivrea designed by Figini and Pollini in the early 1930s, followed by other realisations a few years later, like the big factory in Barcelona, designed by Italo Lauro and Josep Soteras i Mauri. The Spanish industries, built for the new company branch Hispano Olivetti, were innovative buildings, designed with environmental parameters and equipped not only with systems and work spaces, but also with canteens, sport facilities and other services for workers, that certainly improve their work-life in this urban microcosm. The same arrangement was followed for the other industries involved in the great expansion plan directed by Adriano Olivetti that led to the construction of several factories beyond the borders of Italy, like the industries built in Argentina and Brasil after the second world war with the projects of Marco Zanuso. The contribution retraces the history of Hispano Olivetti, trying to focus on the differences and the similarities between Italian and Spanish factories built by the Piedmontese company, in order to understand how corporate policies inspired and guided the project of meaningful modern architectures, developed far from the well-known epicentres of the Modern Movement, but still used nowadays in their cities, after the abandonment and the reconversion of the buildings due to the intense downsizing of the company in 1990s.

The factory for workers. Olivetti in Spain

Di Donato Danilo;Abita Matteo;Morganti Renato;Tosone Alessandra
2020

Abstract

Adriano Olivetti, the “Italian Rathenau”, was the author of an ambitious industrial plan that had no equals in the productive scenario of the country, managing to balance between the scientific organization of the work, proposed by the models of Fordism and Taylorism, and the social issues that focused primarily on the working class conditions. A new conception of production spaces, an original configuration for the underdeveloped Italian context, was crucial for the fulfilment of Adriano’s plan: he conceived a factory as a cosy place which was able to accommodate the arrangement of new assembly lines, experimented by the company located in Ivrea near Turin, and to guarantee at the same time comfortable and suitable spaces for the workers. With a view to subverting the mechanistic alienation induced by the Taylorism, well stigmatized by Chaplin in his movie “Modern Times”, Adriano assigned a key role to architecture and in particular to the proposals of Modern Movement, that could support the conception and the development of a new form of factory. These are the reasons that led to the construction of the new complex in Ivrea designed by Figini and Pollini in the early 1930s, followed by other realisations a few years later, like the big factory in Barcelona, designed by Italo Lauro and Josep Soteras i Mauri. The Spanish industries, built for the new company branch Hispano Olivetti, were innovative buildings, designed with environmental parameters and equipped not only with systems and work spaces, but also with canteens, sport facilities and other services for workers, that certainly improve their work-life in this urban microcosm. The same arrangement was followed for the other industries involved in the great expansion plan directed by Adriano Olivetti that led to the construction of several factories beyond the borders of Italy, like the industries built in Argentina and Brasil after the second world war with the projects of Marco Zanuso. The contribution retraces the history of Hispano Olivetti, trying to focus on the differences and the similarities between Italian and Spanish factories built by the Piedmontese company, in order to understand how corporate policies inspired and guided the project of meaningful modern architectures, developed far from the well-known epicentres of the Modern Movement, but still used nowadays in their cities, after the abandonment and the reconversion of the buildings due to the intense downsizing of the company in 1990s.
978-84-92409-94-5
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11697/147601
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