Atlas Cappella Funeraria Marelli

Cimitero di Cantù
Asnago Vender Architetti

Foto di Jacopo Valentini

Built two years after the Colombo family chapel and a few meters away from it, the Marelli Chapel embodies a completely different interpretation of the theme: no longer an edifice like the earlier work, and as is usual for family chapels, but a built place. A further step forward on the path of constructional and functional sincerity, whose compositional image appears to anticipate the themes of the research into form in architecture that Asnago and Vender would conduct throughout their professional lives. The masonry envelope is dematerialised and the elements of a simple composition immediately appear, based on the relationship between the two stacks – similar to those enclosed inside the Colombo chapel but here outdoors – of the burial loculi set one above the other, with a small courtyard between them, a slender balustrade at the front that also turns by the sides of the two stacks like the fence of a garden, the holly hedge in front of the plastered boundary wall enclosing the cemetery, forming the backdrop to the cross placed to mark the centre of gravity of the composition. Even if there is no enclosure, the space of the chapel exists thanks to these few, in part barely indicated, elements of the composition, which are precisely balanced in their weights and surfaces. The details here are even further simplified and more restrained: the forms represent themselves in their materiality without superimposed decorations. The stone slabs are held in place by bolted iron plates that mark the horizontal lines of the two stacks; the inscriptions are simply carved on the grave stones, and the cross and the balustrade are an iron tube painted white.