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Simone Muscolino

The construction of a full scale doll's house turns into a party.

This video was made to document the making of the "Barbihaus" installation by Cliostraat, part of "Mappe e Percorsi Urbani '98", a project promoted by the municipality of Catania, Sicily, to produce art, music, and architectural events in a series of chosen urban contexts. It's a way to describe a playful event but also, for Simone Muscolino, to make an unusual description of the Italian landscape.

Among the tall new residential buildings of the "Trappeto Nord" place in Catania, Cliostraat created an unconventional work of architecture to let children and their families participate in making a full scale Barbie doll house in the mood of a big and creative street party. The project intended to include other architects, musicians and collaborators who were invited to propose installations. The structure was made by hanging cables and a cover in textile. Synthetic grass covers the ground. In front of the Barbie house some sand has been put. The furnishing was made with old furniture donated by the inhabitants of the area. The building, sometimes painted with vivid colors or decorated with polychrome tiles, has been completed with the active cooperation of a large amount of people who afterwards dedicated their time to its maintenance.

Simone Muscolino's 16mm camera actively observes and interprets the event in the last portion of the video, after documenting the long train trip from Torino, Italy (where Cliostraat was based) to Sicily, by making a surprising visual section of Italy, North to South, observing nature and cities, as the window of the train frames the landscape."


Architect: Cliostraat
Mentioned project: Barbihaus installation (1998)
Project location: Catania, Italy
Additional credits: Stefano Mirti, Matteo Pastore, Francesca Roatta

Italy 1998
Duration: 11'33''

First selected for the 1999 edition of the International Festival for Architecture in Video (then BEYOND MEDIA Festival) organized by Image.