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Radical Landscapes © Elettra Fiumi

RIBA Film Nights: Radical Landscapes and Q&A with director Elettra Fiumi

A cinematic exploration of the 9999 Group, key protagonists of the radical architecture movement in 1960s Italy

During the 1960s, Florence in Italy gave birth of one of the most important avant-garde movements in the history of architecture. Collectives of young architects from the local University experimented with utopian ideas that addressed directly the social, economic and ecological crises taking place around the world, proposing new ways of living through political manifestos and highly conceptual architectural designs. 

Image: Mastinu Apollo, Radical Landscapes © Elettra Fiumi

The movement culminated in the seminal 1972 MoMA exhibition “Italy: The New Domestic Landscape”, featuring installations by Superstudio, Archizoom and the 9999 Group, one of the lesser known but most important collectives from the era. The Group created one of the first ever discotheques in the world, the Space Electronic in Florence, a revolutionary multimedia venue that was an architecture school by day, a nightclub by night.  

Years later, following the death of founding member Fabrizio Fiumi, his daughter Elettra discovered reels of mysterious Super 8 film footage among his possessions. Through studying the footage, she began a highly personal journey to learning more about her father’s life and formative years, but also the architectural scene that he helped shape. Through her exclusive access to original archival materials, Fiumi’s film brings together people still today inspired by the 9999 Group and revives their avant-garde philosophy on architecture, the environment and technology through actualisations of unmade projects. 

Image: Radical Landscapes © Elettra Fiumi

The film screening is followed by a Q&A with director Elettra Fiumi and Catharine Rossi, Professor of Architecture in the Canterbury School of Architecture and Design. 

Film running time: 87 minutes