Varese Youth Space Project


Mosaico Giovani (Mosaic Youth) represents a regional large scale project, which produced a series of initiatives focused to the implementation of specific services for young people on the territory of Lombardy. Into this wide scenario, made available by a total funding of 3M€, one of the largest activities consisted into the reconfiguration of an entire floor of the former Art School “A. Frattini” in Varese, currently become the new Spazio Giovani (Youth Space) of the garden city. The project, developed by the association Prosp3ttiVA in collaboration with the Municipal Technical Office, in most respects the original structure of the last floor of the building, focusing its attention to the functional distribution and interior design strategies.

The concept which leads to the development of the project takes inspiration by the need of a stronger continuity between the period of youth when boys and girls, still students, live their growth accompanied by adults and later, when they start to assume their role into the society and into the professional world. This is the principle that, into Spazio Giovani, mixes different functions together, like the study room, workshop areas, multimedia room, the area dedicated to young associations, together with Informa Giovani (Youth Information Office) and Informa Lavoro (Work Information Office) offices. A place, therefore, that doesn’t seeks to respond to a very specific period that characterizes the growth of an individual, but offers a wide range of possibilities exploitable in various stages, from the study to the encounter with other people, until the research of a first employment.

The last floor of the former Art School “A. Frattini” can be divided into two broad areas, although connected through a fluid space which tends to evoke the concept of relationship individual and group: the part nearest the entrance is dedicated to consultancy activities from adults to youth. By contrast, the second part is devoted to the study and the meeting. Analyzing the project more in detail, functional distribution is organized as follows:

  • Reception Area. Whitin this space, located near to the entrance, is placed an open office working as Spazio Giovani reception area. Into this area are also available some platforms for internet connection and for the research of information focused to the world of youth in relationship with the work, as well as a space dedicated to multimedia editing, equipped with two dedicated workstations.
  • Red Room. This space, characterized by a large glass window in front of Spazio Giovani entrance, offers a possibility of meeting for those youth association which don’t benefit of an own headquarter. The name, assigned to this space even before the Art School was transferred, influenced the choice of furnishing and some decorative writings on the walls, which include original messages left by former students.
  • Youth Information Office. Featuring apple green tones this secluded environment home the organizing committee of initiative and events. The composition of furniture complies with the functionalities of the office and, at the same time, introduce a couple of sofas which make allow the committee to organize small meetings and work sessions, lived in an informal mood under the shadow of natural wall decorations.
  • Work Information Office. Slightly less imaginative than the previous, this office reflects the world of work through its formal order. Part of the furniture, custom made by an architect from Varese, has been transferred from the previous office and, around it, a new set of colors and decorations has been created, aiming at connecting the walls with the furniture palette.
  • Prosp3ttiVA Area. Real heart of the project, this open-space is fully dedicated to the meeting and collaboration. Ideal for work sessions and project development it is characterized by a large rectangular table, which passes directly through the septum wall in the center of the room. A wall decoration accentuates the effect of perspective given by the table, in addition to a series of furniture designed specifically for workshop activities.
  • Meditation Room. This small environment has been dedicated to those people who desire to practice an intensive study activity, without any disturbing element. The space is dominated by a large cross septum, placed in the center of the room and characterized by blue curtains and libraries, also flanked by four tables dedicated to study activities. The color of the drapery panel is taken up within three niches, decorated with hieroglyphics, mathematic and music symbols. Three small tables, dedicated to individual study, complete this composition taking place into the niches.
  • Study Room. Located opposite to the entrance this space is the largest of the entire floor and, for this reason, has been dedicated to study activities for groups. The environment, though free from partitions, is divided into three main areas, respecting its architectural vocation. This space can be easily transformed into a conference room, also suitable for theater performances, concerts and other public initiatives, thanks to the presence of a stage and an appropriate multimedia equipment.

After nearly a year of development of architectural project, followed by the reconfiguration of the site, Spazio Giovani was inaugurated on December, 2nd 2010 in the presence of the Minister of Interior Roberto Maroni, the Mayor of Varese Attilio Fontana, the Regional Councillor Raffaele Cattaneo and the Procincial Councillor Alessandro Fagioli.

Participants to the development of the project:

  • Association Prosp3ttiVA – Andrea Bianchetti, Marco De Santi, Matteo Lo Prete, Luigi Semeraro
  • Collaborators – Francesca Cecchini, Sara Bani Alunno, Giovanna Manzo
  • Varese City Hall – Elena Emilitri, Francesco Spatola, Giuseppe Longhi, Alessandro Barbieri
  • Consultants and participants to the realization – Samuele Zanardo, Roberto Cavallini

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