Fabrica’s Office Is Cooler Than Yours

colors SF.jpgThis photo (at left) was taken at last week’s San Francisco festivities for the 73rd issue of Colors, the quarterly magazine established in 1991 under the editorship of Tibor Kalman and today part of Fabrica, Benetton‘s communication research center based in Treviso, Italy. See those two nametagged fellows standing between Academy of Art University graphic design professors Mary Scott and Phil Hamlett? They are Colors editorial director Enrico Bossan and creative director Erik Ravelo, and if they look suspiciously ebullient and curiously jetlagless, we think we know why. They spend their days dreaming up new ideas for Colors (which now encompasses music, books, documentaries, and exhibitions) here:

(Reed Young & Fabrica).jpg

That’s the Fabrica headquarters, an architectural complex restored and enlarged by Tadao Ando, and the editorial offices of Colors are nestled inside it. Benetton’s goal was to create a research center for (primarily visual) communications that would have the spirit of a Renaissance workshop or fabrica, and work on the complex, a 17th-century villa near Venice, was completed in 2000. We could go on about the villa’s renovated annexes (now housing a warren of workshops and an auditorium), the juxtaposition of antique tiles and wooden floors with stark reinforced concrete, the series of circular columns that reflect in pools of water, but we don’t want to make you too feel too bad about your own office. For the masochists among you, we’ve got three more photos after the jump.

Top and Middle:
Garden and view of Villa Pastega
(Photo by Francesco Radino)
Agora by night
(Photo by Sebastiano Scattolin / Fabrica)