Parking Gio Ponti Artistic Parking Lot Design Improves Architecture
Since the beginning of the history of art, great artists have referenced other great artists. This idea of appropriation became more and more analyzed and accepted in the art world since the onset of postmodernism. Teresa Sapey recontextualizes and reshapes the work of the famous Italian architect and designer Giovanni (Gio) Ponti for one of her most successful parking lot designs, Parking Gio Ponti. It’s a contemporary idea with a wonderful vintage look.
The artist herself is Italian and was hired by a Venezuelan developer, who challenged her to invigorate the awkward parking lot of an exclusive condominium building in Madrid, Spain. This cultural mixture is what got the gears churning in Sapey’s brain. Two Ponti-designed properties in Caracas, Venezuela, Villa Planchart and Villa Arreaza, stood out for their enchanting style, and had this same somewhat unusual collaboration of an Italian designer with a Venezuelan client.
“It’s [Parking Gio Ponti] a tribute to the South American, free-form flavor of those houses.”
The first two floors of the 16,000-square-foot Parking Gio Ponti feature graphic shapes with bright colors. Urban art is often quite colorful, reinvigorating the cityscape, this underground masterpiece is no exception. The overall effect of the imagery is a more inviting, less hostile environment. However, due to the abstract nature of the piece, garage users only have to engage as much as they want to. They can read the piece as simply a pleasant design, or, begin to consider the dialogue that is opened between the architecture of the past and the contemporary use of non-places.
The third floor of the parking garage features a whole different kind of image. Here, the walls are covered with slightly abstracted architectural images in black and white of the actual properties that Ponti designed in Caracas. An iconic element of his work, diagonal stripes on the floor and/or ceiling, also appears, though on the wall instead. There is thus a playful treatment of perspective and a multi-layered immersive experience. First, the patterns look and feel completely different from the original villas by being vertical instead of horizontal. Secondly, as residents pull into their parking space, they literally pull into a living room. Of course, no one is actually going to live in the garage, but there is an added livability to what was before only a place to run away from.
Teresa Sapey has continually impressed with never-before-seen designs in not only parking lots, but all areas of architecture. Her art is often in public places, to which she adds more than just a touch of beauty. She is constantly thinking of unique ways to apply her aesthetic.
“I’m an architect, but I feel I’m an artist. Because I feel I’m an artist, I create. Creativity and creation are my daily bread, to invent, find solutions, create, see, go into the beyond, and have fun.”
With artistic parking lot designs, Sapey found her fame, but to limit her to just one category of art is a mistake. Her portfolio, experience, and personality all prove that she is an artist who never stops working, dissecting contemporary life and urban art. Parking Gio Ponti is just one example of her extraordinary ability to create beauty in the darkest of places.