One of the most visionary built experiments of 20th century architecture was created through the personal initiative of two architects. In 1968, Giuseppe Perugini and his wife Uga de Plaissant build a summer house in the coastal town of Fregene, around 30 km from Rome. Together with a building contractor they started to erect a building in a small pine forest. Using pencil sketches, they spent the next seven years building this project.
Giuseppe Perugini was professor of design at the University of Roma Tre. In 1944, together with Bruno Zevi, Perugini founded the Association for Organic Architecture. Rejecting fascism, with its notions of referencing classical monumental architecture, they promoted a collective, organic approach to architecture. Perugini focused on a comparative research of the theories of 17th-century Baroque architecture of Francesco Borromini. He was one of the first to work with computers in architecture in order to optimize the composition of rooms. In the Casa, new construction methods were tested and traditional spatial allocations were rearranged.
The ideas behind the Casa have been far ahead of their time, and they still are. The structure is variable and extendable, and with its technical aesthetics could be a habitat on another planet. Independent floor and ceiling elements are detached from the ground and held together by an extendable concrete frame. Wall elements can be removed and reconfigured to create different arrangements and allowing different connections between house and site. The floor plan consists of four levels that merge into one another without being separated by walls or doors. Only the two round bathrooms that hang on the outer facade are separated from the main room by doors. A metal staircase leads up from the site to the living room.
After the death of Giuseppe Perugini (1995) and Uga de Plaissant (2004), the building began to decline.