• Steven Heller

The Futurist Post Office

With post offices like this, who needs email? My friend Michele Angelini over at Italian Ways has made the kind of archeological design discovery that comes close to matching Heinrich Schliemann’s excavation of the historical Troy. Only this is neither buried nor ruined. One can walk right into The Palace of the Post Office in La Spezia, Liguria, and touch the mosaics. It is a futuristic celebration of modernity yet also a relic of the fascist era.

The building was designed by Angiolo Mazzoni and built in 1933, and hosts in its tower a great mosaic by the Futurist masters Luigi Fillia and Enrico Prampolini. This unique work of art was to represent the wondrous destiny of globalized communication, with fleet airplanes, unstoppable ships, and penetrating trains. Gazing at the tesserae-encrusted walls, you can almost hear the ultramodern rumble of communication by air, sea and land. This must be one of the compositions that the 1938 “Futurist Manifesto of Ceramics and Aeroceramics” implicitly glorifies, as its authors praise the innovative developments of ceramics, the experimental research that brings mechanical aesthetics and its dominant rhythms into this craft, and the synthetic aeropainting that can dynamically document landscapes – both natural and urban – from above.

You can see more of the architectural splendor here.

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