1. Home
  2. Architects
  3. Biography
  4. Luca Molinari

Luca Molinari


Critic and architecture historian Luca Molinari (1966) graduated from the Faculty of Architecture, Milan in 1992, after working and studying at the Faculty of Architecture, Delft University of Technology in Holland and ETSAB, Barcelona School of Architecture.
He obtained his doctorate from the Delft Faculty in 1993 with a doctoral thesis on Ernesto Nathan Rogers and post-war Italian architecture.

Particularly active in education and academia since the nineties, Molinari holds workshops and conferences at numerous institutes and universities. His roles include Associate Professor of Contemporary Architecture History at the Faculty of Architecture, Vanvitelli University, Naples, Director at NABA School of Design (2005-2006), coordinating the Masters degree in Interior Design (NABA, 2007-2011) and consultant for the “Proyecto de Arquitectura e Realidad Contemporanea” Masters degree at the Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura, University of Seville.

He is also a visiting professor at Cornell University of Architecture, Art, and Planning in Rome, Fondazione Fotografia Modena, Academy of Fine Arts, Guangzhou (2006) and Camerino-Ascoli University (2000-2004).
His work in publishing as a theorist and critic is ongoing. He has been editor of the Architecture and Design section at Skira Publishers since 1995.
Over the years Molinari has worked with numerous Italian and overseas magazines, including  Corriere della Sera, La Stampa, AD, Domus, Area, Lotus, Abitare, Ottagono, Il progetto, Archis, The Plan, A+U. Since 2015 he has written a weekly column on architecture in L’Espresso.

From 2001 to 2004 he was Scientific Director of the architecture and urban planning section of the Milan Triennale and is a member of the Triennale scientific board. During his time at the Triennale, he curated the first re-edition of the Gold Medal for Architecture (2003), Festival of Architecture (2004) and a series of conferences entitled “Cantieri aperti” (Open Sites)(2004-2005).
From 2000 to 2006, he was Scientific Director at the Piero Portaluppi Foundation where he was engaged in reorganizing the archives and completed the first retrospective and catalog on the great Italian architect, Piero Portaluppi. Linea errante nell’architettura italiana (Milan Triennale, 2003).

In 2009, alongside architect Anna Barbara, he co-founded Viapiranesi srl, a multidisciplinary services and strategic planning studio. He also collaborates with numerous public and private institutions, and was Scientific Director for architecture and urban planning at the Milan Triennale (2001-2004). In addition, he curated the Annals of Architecture at the Palazzo Reale, Naples (2006-2007).
His revival of the famous and pioneering exhibition Made in Italy Environments and Counter environments. Italy: The New Domestic Landscape (held at MoMA in 1972), which Molinari curated with Peter T. Lang and Mark Wasiuta, received great media acclaim.
In 2015 Luca Molinari founded his own practice in Milan, supported by a multidisciplinary team of professionals. The practice provides integrated “tailor-made” services including content design, consulting, curatorships, selection processes, planning, and coordinating and managing projects and processes in the field of architecture and design culture.

Design solutions include exhibitions and events, architecture and town planning competitions, in addition to books and publications.
The Molinari studio’s mission is "to provide sustainable tools to promote and share knowledge, to shape visions and needs into concrete projects for contemporary living, to build awareness, and give a voice, identity and quality to urban spaces and regions."
Since 2012 he has been a member of the Consiglio Superiore dei Beni Culturali e Paesaggistici, an advisory board for the Italian Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Tourism.
During his prolific publishing career, Molinari has analyzed the form of urban planning and development of architecture in a number of volumes and reprints. He has also curated publications on Calatrava (1998), Fuksas (2005, translated into several language), and Tadao Ando (2009) for Skira.

Accolades for his research, critiques and promoting of architectural culture include the Ernesto N. Rogers Award (2006 by the International Architecture Exhibition), Jean Tschumi Award (UIA Congress, 2008) and the title “Academic of Merit” conferred by the Academy of Fine Arts, Perugia (2016).
Luca Molinari selected curatorships, exhibitions and installations
- Talking Head (mostra fotografica) - Galleria Casa degli Atellani, Milano (Italia), 2019
- The Far/o/ther Architecture (mostra) - Akbank Sanat Gallery, Istanbul (Turchia), 2019
- The Egg. dieci notti (installazione) - Teatro Dal Verme, Milano (Italia), 2018
- Divina sezione. L'architettura italiana per la Divina Commedia (mostra) - Reggia di Caserta e Palazzo Trinci, Foligno (Italia), 2018
- Historical Promiscuites. Works by Nathaniel Furman (mostra personale) - Fuorisalone, Milano (Italia), 2018
- Acqua, luce, benessere. Un’architettura alpina contemporanea (mostra) - Triennale di Milano (Italia), 2018
- La Città e l’Acqua. Un laboratorio verso il futuro (rassegna) - Arsenali Repubblicani - II Biennale di Architettura di Pisa (Italia), 2017
- SpazioFMG per l'Architettura (rassegna di eventi), Milano (Italia), 2007-2017
- Triennale Design Day, Baku (Azerbaigian), 2017
- San Pellegrino Flagship Factory (content design, processi di selezione, coordinamento), 2016-2017
- Environments and Counter environments. Italy: The New Domestic Landscape MoMA 1972 (mostra evento, con Peter Lang e Mark Wasiuta), New York (USA); New York (USA) 2009, Basilea (Svizzera) 2010, Barcellona (Spagna) 2011, Stoccolma (Svezia) 2011, Chicago (USA) 2013
- Check-in-architecture, Torino; Venezia (Italia), 2008
- Sustainab.Italy - Festival dell'Architettura, Londra (Regno Unito), 2008
- Annali dell’architettura, Palazzo Reale, Napoli (Italia) 2006-2007
- Antinapoli, Napoli (Italia) 2005
- Festa dell'Architettura - Triennale di Milano (Italia), 2004
- Progetto Portaluppi, Milano (Italia), 2000-2004
- 1^ Edizione della Medaglia d’oro per l’architettura italiana (premio e mostra itinerante) - Triennale di Milano (Italia), 2003
- Effetti Collaterali (mostra) - Triennale di Milano (Italia), 1998-99
- Cantieri aperti (ciclo di incontri) - Triennale di Milano (Italia), 2004-2005
- Le forme del cibo (mostra, con Susanna Ravelli) - Opos, Milano (Italia), 1999
- Santiago Calatrava. Work in Progress - Triennale di Milano (Italia), 1998-1999
- Stalker (mostra) - Opos, Milano (Italia), 1996
Official website:



Interview with Luca Molinari about FMGxtreme_Lab, an FMG workshop reconstructed in the SpazioFMG for Architecture during Fuorisalone 2009.

"At this year’s Salone del Mobile, the Spazio FMG | per l’Architettura wanted to do something different. In the past we focused on two great contemporary designers, inaugurating the FMG space in the first year with Michele De Lucchi and inviting Aldo Cibic to design a tortoise outside the space in the second year, last year. The idea we had this year, at this important time, was to simulate the FMG workshop in the space. Why? Because at this time I believe it is much more interesting to focus on design methods, on how things are made and on the possibility of actively and openly playing with all architects, rather than focusing on a single designer. One of the basic ideas was to take the workshop in Fiorano (at the company’s headquarters, ed.), take it apart and bring it here. It's a rather unusual set-up compared to the other ones we see in the Salon these days, something rather anomalous, a workplace... The earths, the materials, the library actually come from the real workshop. It was about to be taken apart anyway to move it to a new location, and so we took advantage of this and stole it for a few days. But why? Because I believe it is very interesting for people to see the complexity behind the production of these materials, which are natural and yet innovative at the same time. We thought it would be right to bring the "tools of the trade" here: the tools with which these tiles are designed and planned, while at the same time challenging the architects. Over the next three days we have invited a series of very talented Italian architects, from Carlo Pellegrini to 5+1, from Park to Marzorati, young people like Francesco Librizzi and Gambardella, all invited to come here and play with this computer programme, which will soon be available on the FMG website. To play with this simulation programme and design tiles. The idea is to go back to something like a tailor's workshop for production of tiles. With these materials, these technologies, and this programme, the architect can think up and design a totally natural tile, in line with his work, his expectations, what he is studying at the time. And so we come to a dimension in which big industry comes to meet the designer and work on an individual design for a unique designed work.

Related Articles: Luca Molinari

Related Articles



From the 31st of January to the 3rd of March, the works of the finalists and winners of the 7th...



Westway Architects: From the "Reti 15" Recovery, to Iconic Projects in Italy and Ethiopia

Westway Architects has transformed a former industrial space in Rome's San Lorenzo district into...



Huizhen High School: a campus that celebrates free thought

Huizhen High School, designed by the Approach Design Studio in collaboration with the Zhejiang...