29 July 2013
The simpler designs look, the more complex they are and the more care needs to be taken over their details. With an already challenging name, Diogene, the meditation cabin designed by Renzo Piano, was even more so in its gestation, which has taken about ten years and is still not over. Along the way, Piano encountered Rolf Fehlbaum, who found the idea interesting and has made a prototype for Vitra, which can be visited on the Vitra Campus in Germany (Weil am Rhein). Not having decided yet whether to put it into mass production, Vitra is waiting to what kind of potential it has on the basis of the public’s reaction. For the moment, Diogene is a little house measuring 2.40 x 2.96 meters with a pitched roof, a wooden interior and an aluminum exterior, and is completely self-sufficient from the viewpoint of energy, plumbing and other systems. So it can be set up anywhere, without requiring any connection to the infrastructure. It’s so small that there’s no room to carry out any activity other than eating, sleeping or thinking. A good reason to get out and communicate with others.