The Lingotto building, in Turin, once housed the FIAT automobile factory. Construction started in 1916 and the building opened in 1923. The design (by young architect Matté Trucco) was unusual in that it had five floors, with raw materials going in at the ground floor, and cars built on a line that went up through the building. Finished cars emerged at rooftop level to go onto the test track. It was the largest car factory in the world at that time. For its time, the Lingotto building was avante-garde, influential and impressive—Le Corbusier called it “one of the most impressive sights in industry”, and “a guideline for town planning”. 80 different models of car were produced there in its lifetime, including the Fiat Topolino of 1936.
The factory became outmoded in the 1970s and the decision was made to finally close it in 1982. The closure of the plant led to much public debate about its future, and how to recover from industrial decline in general. An architectural competition was held, which was eventually awarded to Renzo Piano, who envisioned an exciting public space for the city. The old factory was rebuilt into a modern complex, with concert halls, theatre, a convention centre, shopping arcades and a hotel. The eastern portion of the building is the headquarters of the Automotive Engineering faculty of the Polytechnic University of Turin. The work was completed in 1989. The track was retained, and can still be visited today on the top floor of the shopping mall and hotel.
On the roof there are two new parts designed by architect Renzo Piano.
“La bolla” (the bubble) on the south side, is a glass bubble housing a meeting room with a landing platform for helicopters.
“Pinacoteca Agnelli” on the north side, is a permanent exhibition space with 25 masterpieces paintings from Giovanni and Marella Agnelli private collection.
(text partially adapted from Wikipedia)
Strange things happen
In the following picture, reflected in the left window, you can see a man with a white shirt. While I was taking these pictures with my Nikon FM2, I saw this white haired man (probably from north Europe) wandering around with a strange optical tool in his hands. It seemed to be an old Super8 movie camera. Impossible, in 2016, that someone uses this kind of vintage stuff…
After I took this picture, suddenly, I heard a TRRRRR… yes a TRRRRRR. The old man was filming with a mechanical Super8 movie camera !
When we crossed our paths, he saw my film camera and, with no need of any word, we smiled one each-other. Two crazy men, in the same place, in the same moment, with an old chemical filming device in their hands.
All pictures were taken on August 2016 with a Nikon FM2 on Ilford FP4 film
Abandoned power station, Italy 2016
6×6 film scan
Film: Ilford FP4
Developer: Hydrofen Bellini – 1+39 – 5’30”
I have, more or less, fifteen pictures from this point of view. Each time I go back to this place I take this picture. With the digital reflex, with 135 film, with telephone camera and, this time, with the Yashica MAT 124. This is a magic place.