Francisco Gianotti

Francisco Gianotti

Francisco Gianotti (1881-1967) was an architect who designed many important Art Nouveau buildings in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Born on 4 April 1881 in Lanzo near Turin, Italy, he graduated as an architect from the Fine Arts Academy of Turin in 1904, together with his brother Juan Bautista. In 1905 the two brothers took a post-graduate course together in Brussels and later they designed various pavilions for the 1906 International Exhibition in Milan.

Gianotti arrived in Buenos Aires, in 1909 where, together with his compatriot, Mario Palanti, he took charge of the construction and decoration of the Italian Pavilion at the Exposición Internacional del Centenario (1910). In 1911 he opened his own studio and started to work on the design of residential houses and apartment buildings, using a mixture of Italian and French styles. Unlike his colleagues Virginio Colombo and Mario Palanti, who worked for wealthy compatriots, Gianotti was also commissioned by upper class Argentine clients for whom he undertook projects in the Beaux Arts style.

In 1913 he was commissioned to design the Galería Güemes in Florida Street, Buenos Aires, possibly one of his best works. With 14 floors, and a height of 80 m, it was considered to be the first skyscraper in Buenos Aires. Two years later in 1915 a famous confectioner, Cayetano Brenna, commissioned him to design the Confitería El Molino. Located on the corner of Callao and Rivadavia Avenues, the building became a well-known landmark in the city. Until 1918 he designed mainly in the Art Nouveau style, but later employed a more orthodox Eclecticism combining Italian and Spanish styles. He completed his last project in 1959.

Gianotti died in Buenos Aires on 13 February 1967.

References

Mimi Bohm, Buenos Aires, Art Nouveau, Ediciones Xavier Verstraeten, Buenos Aires, 2005.
El Portal de arte y arquitectura en Internet(in Spanish) http://www.arquitectura.com/historia/protag/gianotti/gianotti.asp


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