Vicus Aureum

Double skin facade


AUTHOR: Aureum 40°
PLACE: Napoli, Italy
YEAR: 2016
STATUS: Unbuilt
INSTAGRAM: @aureum_40


Vicus Aureum is the meeting between the old medieval village of Goldsmiths of Naples and the problematic twentieth century via Marittima. The project is moving on a double skin facades system: five buildings are decomposing between two distinct urban areas from the medieval wall towards the overlook of nature. In front of this “highway to the sea”, which cannot become a public liveable space just for the palm trees and bike lanes, we have flipped vertically the public space and the overlook.

The traditional Neapolitan balconies are revolutionized and reinterpreted, cut out by golden elements that reflects the light and sparkle and from the railings where one can overlook and breathe the salinity windblown. We regain a distant relationship with nature, the gulf, and the sea that “wets out” Naples.

Naples is a city that is born from the dream of a siren. The sea calls her back every day like the backwash, and so the salty breeze spreads through alleys and balconies.

The balcony is an appendix of the building that stretches out toward the outside and the sea. The project moves from the intention to bring back the breeze on Via Marina, and a new overlooking on the landscape that tends to infinity.

The line on the sea become a façade, but mainly an architectural machine to look forward. The double skin façade determines an intestine reality. The golden tectonic elements reflect the sun, and they are a prow of a ship. They answer to the call of the siren Parthenope and the dreams come alive for the inhabitants of the buildings. The balcony has been deconstructed and reconstructed piece by piece, it has become footbridge and then architectural catharsis (κάθαρσις).

Our graphic experience was born from different suggestions. We started with the drawings of Piranesi and during our research we have been contaminated by Pop graphics, the American comic strips and by Dogma.

We express our style through clean lines and monochromatic patterns, whose main purpose is to bring out our architecture. The whole work follows rigid rules, every single element has his own texture and his own way of representation in the different images.

The black and white has been our choice since the beginning. In many cases, colours could mislead the perception of pure shapes.  At first it has been hard to limit out palette, but then the result was clear and clean.

One of the main goals of our drawings is the temporal abstraction. From our point of view, architecture doesn’t have to be locked in a certain time, but it should cross in the temporal flow, never getting older.

Also, we followed a scheme for our silhouettes. People who live in our architecture dissolved themselves in point clouds to not disturb the spaces enjoyment.


Aureum40° is a collective group born in 2015 with the intention to spread their idea of architecture. The continuous experimentation founded upon the principle of a raw and direct architecture. The sketch like a system of rules, through lines and silhouette, pure forms and suggestions. A paradigm rich in contradictions as the fortieth parallel.


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