The Drawing Matter collection is both an archive of drawings, but also of 'matter'– of the mass of information we have collected over the years that helps us to understand them. Our files often include associated images, publication and exhibition histories, and comments from scholars and from the designers themselves, together with the (sometimes strange) discoveries of material history.

Discorsi per Immagini

Adolfo Natalini, Twin Towers

This visual essay is an experiment for the Drawing Matter editorial team, which takes the form of a short voyage of exploration in the files. In this way it is messy. It shows some of the material relating directly to a single wonderful drawing: page 68 from Adolfo Natalini's Sketchbook 12, in which he explores a key early project with Superstudio. The drawing was made on the 29th September 1969, for a booth at an antiques fair in Florence, and prefigures the famous Superstudio collage of Manhattan and also the World Trade Centre itself, which was already under construction in 1968–69.

To lead you gently back to where you are now, we have included some links – on Natalini himself and his sketchbooks, on Superstudio, on the Twin Towers.......

 To see more about how the ideas evolved before and after  Pages before and after page 68 

To see more about the evolution of the continuous monument ...

To see more on Towers and twins 

Mostra Antiquariato Pal Strozzi

Superstudio, Poltronova lamp

This magenta hanging light for Design Centre [Poltronova] from 'Design d'inventione e design d'evasione' in Domus 475, June 1969 uncovers design drawings of Falling Star floor light and Narghile table light, showing that rather than 'Twin Towers' these vertical elements were lamps – situated behind a table and atop a tiger-skin rug.

To see more how magenta creates a paper trail of association More things magenta 

to see more on the development of Gratz ...


Biennale dell'Antiquariato, Palazzo Strozzi, 1969

New Domestic Landscape, plan, MoMA archives

Drawn from the archives at the Museum of Modern Art, and used as early research for Drawing Matter when looking at Superstudio, this image shows the early location of the Superstudio installation. Their neighbours – Ugo La Pietra and Archizoom.Floor plan of exhibition Mostra Antiquariato at the Palazzo Strozzi in 1969. A similar plan would be drawn for exhibition 'The New Domestic Landscape' at the Museum of Modern Art in 1972. Superstudio's landscape has been transferred from the interior to the urban, conflated in the original sketchbook images with the appearance of the 'Twin Towers', and then revealed through tracing the magenta threads and the archival documents on TNDL.

To see more on the new domestic landscape exhibition and Superstudios neighbours ...For floor plan of the New Domestic Landscape, Museum of Modern Art, 1972 to which this compares 

 The first image is included in the current exhibition 'Home Futures' at the Design Museum London and curated by Eszter Steierhoffer, whose companion piece can also be found here.

Drawing Matter

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