LABORATORY OF ARCHITECTURE & ALMA ENGINEERING was founded in 2005 by Architect Piergiorgio Semerano. We are now located in an old tobacco factory, a massive 19th century building built around an orange grove in the Lecce countryside, surrounded by over 13 hectares of sunflowers. It is a great meeting place and isolated at the same time, here a passion for art and architecture grows like it did during the Renaissance. It is a melting pot of young architects from around the world who carry out professional and research activities in cooperation with other professionals, from craftsman to artists, developing new forms of design and multi-disciplinary experimentation.
The Laboratory is a common denominator for a mixture of strong personalities. It is not an office but rather an open space that can be reached both physically and online, as a meeting point for many different professionals, each with his or her expertise.
A series of projects are currently in progress, from historical site restoration to the development of innovative forms of living, the recovery of “artisan” working methods and experimentation of new techniques and materials.
Some of our works have recently received important acknowledgements:
– The “Perchè” Restaurant in Roncade (Treviso, Italy), completed in 2006, has been selected for the Italian Architecture Golden Medal Award during the 2009 Triennale in Milan, Italy, to represent Italian Architecture at the 2010 Shanghai World Expo;
– The De Masi House project (2008) has been awarded at the 2009 Barbara Cappochin International Bienniale of Architecture and will be exhibited at the World Day of Architecture in Tokyo, Japan;
– The new Capozza Stadium in Casarano (Lecce, Italy), characterized by photo voltaic roofing, has been recognized as one of the world’s four best projects of its kind.
The Lab is designing and carrying out projects that involve elements typical of the Salento landscape: fortified farms, rocky coastlines, the countryside, sandstone quarries and lakes. These are several projects independent from one another,and are all based on a common element: working on existent architecture, while introducing contemporary themes and combining them with traditional ones, according to the nature of the landscape.