Nuoro Chamber of Commerce

Visualizza la sezione: Nuoro Chamber of Commerce
Visualizza la sezione: Nuoro Chamber of Commerce

The current headquarter of the Chamber of Commerce – originally named palazzo del Consiglio dell'Economia Corporativa – is one of the landmarks of the fascist Nuoro, in other words of the city which became a province in 1927 and underwent an image renewal by the central power throughout the construction of a series of public utility offices as well as political representation ones of the regime in force. Designed by venetian Pietro Bartorelli, the building was inaugurated in 1938 (works started in 1935): it is signed by a non-Sardinian architect but who, in the capacity of civil engineering functionary, had to operate on the Island between 1936 and 1941.

The civil engineering body, already in 1934, had already prepared a first planning proposal in a "20th-century style" which considered the presence of a honorably perron and two separate porticos to allow a separate access to offices and to representation rooms (for both spaces, specific decorations were considered); it was judged as too much expensive by the Ministero delle Corporazioni and therefore rejected. Conversely, Bartorelli was consciously inspired for his drawing – matching sobriety and functionality criteria – by a model destined to be highly successful at that time, which is the Roman building Arnaldo da Brescia on the Tiber embankment built by Giuseppe Capponi between 1927 and 1928. 

What still today mostly strikes the contemporary observer's gaze is the peculiarity of the building position in space – the angled entrance in the crossroads between via Deffenu and via Papandrea – and its contrast of volumes along the whole façade: the lower part is convex, the upper one is concave while window openings on several floors are clearly defined by deep splays and lacking decorative framing elements. The Chamber of Commerce ends up again talking to other important buildings created in the same years as Palazzo delle Poste in the underlying Piazza Crispi (1925-1927) and above all, the two educational high school buildings anywhere near: Liceo Ginnasio “G. Asproni” (1930-32), with his main entrance on the near Via Dante and the "next door" Istituto Magistrale (1935-41), whose original curvilinear style is recalled; extremely particular is the system of correspondences, compared to the last one, in turn, distinguished by important perimetral "sinuosities" that give a symbolic urban value to via Papandrea and the whole block.

Since 2009, all spaces from the left wing of the ground floor – partly basements, designated headquarters to look after archives – have undergone a reorganization work handled by architect Antonello Cuccu, who in 2011 allowed to inaugurate a new public space in the city that could be used as a library and an art gallery. Inside a new chestnut shelving covering the whole wall, crafted by local artisans, are now arranged about 5000 volumes: texts that mainly concern economical and juridical issues, commercial and administrative right agreements, social studies, in addition to a part of the archive documents of the body itself, the Notiziario Economico from Nuoro Province among them, a publication edited by the Chamber of Commerce itself between 1946 and 1980, the "crown jewel" of the library. In the dice cup at the entrance (which keeps the original green marbled flooring and is furnished with 30's style furniture, among them the glass door), as well as in the long interior hallway and in all five rooms – of various sizes equipped with workstations to study and consult – some of the many paintings owned by the body have been organized – body that, since its establishment, has constantly bought works from Sardinian artists from the 20th century and from the national ones which had the chance to exhibit inside periodic city exhibitions.

Arranged among all spaces, according to a mainly thematic criterion, several landscapes stand out from those sixty works, a reduced but meaningful selection of graphic art works from the Island and some famous ones by painters from the Early 20th century (from Antonio Ballero to Giuseppe Biasi), among them the famous trio that in 1933 awarded to Giovanni Ciusa Romagna the Young prize at the IV Mostra Sindacale di Cagliari: the Processione in honor of San Sebastiano and the pair of portraits including Fanciulla con boccale and the iconic Donna con frutta, main character for years of the advertising banner of the MAN Museum (which exposed it on memo).

On October, 12th, 2014, together with Palazzo delle Poste and Palazzo del Governo in the near via Deffenu, the Chamber of Commerce played a leading role in the initiative FAIMARATHON: Alla scoperta della vecchia Nuoro: architettura razionalista organized by Fondo Ambiente Italiano.


Short bibliography

Masala, Architettura dall’Unità d’Italia alla fine del ‘900, Nuoro, ILISSO, 2001.