Ettore Sottsass (1917-2007)
The thing I love most about Ettore Sottsass is his beautiful, poignant, often ironic writing. The following was in The Reader (a compilation of architecture writings from news papers around the world) put out by Abitare. The writing was originally published in Terrazzo, n. 12
HOUSES HAVE AN INTERIOR
Those who build a house will also be building an inner void.
People, I mean the infinte, diverse, ancient and new people, fill the empty spaces of their houses, and their workshops, with whatever they think may somehow count as protection, precisely, against the unknown.
There are also the protections of so-called “culture”, the protections of rooms full of books or maybe full of “works of art”. “Culture is the most detached, the subtlest protection, the protection that seems to exist beyond the protection itself; “culture” is imagined as a total way out, as the place nearest the truth, as the place that protects more than all the other places, as the place that rubs out all daily sins, as the place farthest from the storms and the becalmed seas, farthest from the unkown, from frailty, farthest from the dreams of guilt, from syphilis and impotence, as the place ever blessed by sperm, as the final place never disclosed by moans.