NOTE SULLâ€™ARCHITETTURA A MILANO NEL 1881
AbstractThe 1881 exposition is presented by the press, both the popular and the specialized one, as the evidence of the progress made by Italy: the increase in the industrial production which reduces the dependence upon the foreigner, an opportunity for the rapprochement between the â€œdifferent Italian peoplesâ€. The leading function of Milan is extolled, as organizer of the great event, â€œmoral capitalâ€ as the centre of progress of the production world. The observations about architecture form part of this perspective: both its being a utilitarian structure, thus at the service of peopleâ€™s progress, for its function of fulfilling the needs more and more complex or more keenly felt by the social conscience, and as a formal structure, product of a history but also, as concerns this aspect, a direct consequence of the social and economic organization; however, generally speaking, with a distinction between â€œconstructionâ€ and â€œarchitectureâ€, between utility and art, between poetic expression and economic requirements, therefore denying the fundamental premise of the positivist culture according to which art is the expression of a beauty variable over time, since it is the result of social conditions. Exemplary in this respect is the failure of the great enterprise of the monument to the â€œCinque Giornateâ€ which should have been simultaneously a celebratory architecture, a gateway representative of the modern city, a functional structure for excise services. In this context a particular relevance has the conservation activity which positively satisfies the need to get to know the process which leads to today, which purifies the document from tampering and takes it back to formal unity, so that artâ€™s persuasive strength, highly influential upon everyoneâ€™s mind, may make people understand their belonging to a unitary civilization, may shape the Italiansâ€™ social conscience.
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