Emanuele Colombi - Architecture & Design

Among reflections of water, bridges, and canals

Here's 'La Venezia', where my projects are born.

Bridges, stairways, churches, museums and tall buildings.
But also a fascinating system of canals through which sea water flows, giving the visitor’s eyes a new and surprising perspective, with fascinating reflections of water and unexpected views from below.

The most beautiful way to discover Livorno, my city.

The district in which I have chosen to create my studio is in the true historic centre of Livorno. Built in the 1600s at the request of the powerful merchants of the time to facilitate the transport of goods, it is still called “Venezia Nuova” (New Venice) because of its structure that recalls that of the famous Venetian lagoon, from which techniques and labour were imported for construction.

Among reflections of water, bridges, and canals

Perfectly inserted in the surrounding environment and realized with a restoration respectful of the origins of the spaces, my studio is a declaration of intent, a story to be told. Here, in fact, once was one of the many warehouses that stood on the ground floor or in the cellars of the elegant surrounding buildings. Owned by wealthy merchants who – from the merchant ships moored in the port and had their goods transported by barge across the canals.

I wanted to maintain this mercantile flavor, this idea of work that was at the base of the space, using fir boards for the floors, obtained from the wooden planks normally used as walking surfaces for scaffolding by construction companies for the floors.

Then, right from the start, the idea emerged of reusing the waterways to access the study by means of small boats typical of Leghorn, just as was done in the past. After all, the canals in Leghorn are still today, as a whole, a real road system that would be interesting to recover and enhance.

Today, the Venezia district has abandoned its mercantile origins and is nourished by a cultural and touristic spirit, rich as it is in restaurants, bars, artisan shops, churches, museums, libraries…

There are many events that animate the district every year, including the summer festival “Effetto Venezia” and the historic “Barontini Cup”, a timed rowing competion in which the gozzi, (the boats typical of the various districts of the city), compete against each other between the canals by rowing. It is an authentic place full of history; a stimulating environment full of creativity.

My ideal refuge, to collect and put together suggestions and build projects to be disseminated around the world.


Scali del Monte Pio 21
Livorno 57123 • Italy
Office +39 0586 211620

Galgalei ha-Plada St 13
46100 Herzliya • Israel
Office +972 559412353

125, Rue de l'Université 75007
Paris VII Arrondissement • France
Office +33 749360547

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