David Bodino is well aware that beyond the beauty of words, design is a battlefield. The engineers have barricaded themselves behind a defence line, convinced that every object has to be first of all functional, and efficient, also to the detriment of aesthetic quality. In the opposing trench line we find the artists, directors, and trend setters, a certain genre of architects, who above all else are advocates of harmony and beauty.
This is a painful but inevitable conflict, especially for people like David, who were born in a corner of the world where these controversies between beauty and utility are more strongly felt than anywhere else. Italy is the country of the classical statues, Botticelli’s Venus, the Renaissance revolution of perspective and the “aesthetic body” expressed in all its possible variants, from fashion to sports cars or the glorious industrial designs of the 1970s. However, in Italy beauty is not an incidental, supplementary quality or an add-on. It is the irrevocable focus and tell-tale sign around which all else is arranged and structured. However, besides being Italian, David also comes from the Piedmont region, and this in a sense, is where the perspective changes.
The Piedmont region distinguishes itself from the others for the vigour of its passion for technology, deriving mostly from its forceful industrial development demonstrated much earlier than in other parts of the country, and its avant-garde enterprises, laboratories, and research institutes. In Piedmont the almost obsessive interest for new technologies can be felt in the air, is instilled since birth and is almost impossible to escape from.
This was how David was raised, caught up between beauty and functionality, suffering from the effects of unavoidable contradictions but also nursing the conviction that an honorable agreement, a harmonic fusion between the two aspects, is possible in some way. In the end, the result is the word we use to describe this long desired synthesis. It starts with the letter ”c” and is precisely called “creativity.”
David Bodino graduated from the University of Turin with a degree in architecture. His undergraduate thesis dwelt on the transformation of a limestone quarry into an elegant museum. His Ph.D. thesis a few years later, was about cyber architecture which involves the application of the thesis of virtual reality to the discipline of architecture, urban planning and design. He engaged in culture, art, aesthetics, engineering, ergonomics, and computer science. In the years to follow, alternating his freelancing with university professorship, David explored themes such as architectural design, interior design, virtual event installments, stereoscopic visualization and contemporary museums in Europe.
As Gregory Bateson has said, it certainly holds true that each of us works a lifetime around a few essential ideas, and at times even on just one. Despite the great demand for simplicity, however, this elaboration process is often audacious and in the end takes root in the most diverse countries, cultures and territories. Towards the end of the 1990s, for example, David spent a few years in Barcelona where he worked with the studio of Alfredo Arribas on projects like the Musée de la Musique in Antwerp (Belgium), the almost homonymous Cité de la Musique in Montluçon (France), the multifunctional concert hall of the touristic pole of Castellaneta Marina (Italy) and the Sunflower restaurant in Jakarta. Note that precisely the concert halls are those that most require design projects with a particular mix of aesthetic and technical-functional features which David has always targeted with great determination.
And speaking of the cultural field, David Bodino authored one of the very first(at least in Italy) virtual applications in real time used for publicity communications and promotions purposes. Entitled Piedmont Par Excellence it is used to showcase the assets of Piedmont to journalists, politicians and opinion makers around the world, without their having to leave their homes. It was presented for the first time in Paris in 2003 and the year after in India following the ”Ciampi delegation.”
Another discipline David Bodino has always dedicated himself to with passion and skill is Interior design which is hardly a marginal field. Also here as we know, everything revolves around the desire to affect the lives of people not only aesthetically, but also in terms of more comfort, functionality, and improve their lives, in short. This resulted in the installation of venues like the Wasabi, one of the most renowned Japanese restaurants in Turin, the conference hall of the Pricesa Yaiza Resort of Lanzarote in the Canary Islands, and the numerous Control Towers of Cesa Logistics in Milan, Madrid and Antwerp.
Drawing from his proven competences as an industrial designer, most often David personally designs and sets up decor items included in the blueprints.
These competencies become useful also when directing the design team of Ferrero Legno, a leading European company in the production of high range door productions, and placing his own experience at the disposition of the art directors servicing other Italian companies.
We still have to mention David Bodino’s ”main passion.” By this, however, we are referring only to architecture and in particular, to luxury residential architecture.
As we all know, the Côte d'Azur is one of the favourite destinations of those who wish to enjoy the privilege of charming houses equipped with all the comforts and enhanced by a climate and natural landscape among the most renowned in the world. That lifestyle was so brilliantly captured by many films and novels (as some may recall, in the “The Swimming Pool” with Alain Delon and Romy Schneider). Over the last few years, however, also the residential solutions offered by Piedmont have attracted a lot of interest, especially those in the hilly Langhe areas considered particularly appealing due to the value of the landscape, cultural assets and refined food-and-wine civilization. Over the years,
David Bodino whose mother is French, took part in dynamic architectonic adventures both on the Italian coastline and in the northwest, designing delightful mansions and taking charge of restructuring and conservative renovations of some historical buildings tracing to the Renaissance, Neo-Gothic and Liberty periods..
In mentioning the Renaissance another related topic comes to mind. Does it not occur to you, that what we have said about David’s qualities as a person and a professional, recalls in some way, the distinctive features of the Italian Renaissance? The harmonious integration of technological and artistic-artisanal know-how, joyful fluctuation between the refined academic atmospheres,“handcrafting” of the workshops, capacity to listen, and designs indissolubly matched with the demands for functionality and usability: humanism, not of intricate words but of concrete empathy and solidarity between people.
Isn’t it coincidental that Antonio Stradivari himself was a late and ingenious son of the Italian Renaissance? And all things considered, couldn’t we say the same of David Bodino? Try to consider that.