Book Launch: The Lake of Venice

Join us to celebrate the book launch of The Lake of Venice on Wednesday, October 5th at the Italian Cultural Institute of Chicago.

The Lake of Venice (Anteferma, 2022), co-written by Lorenzo Fabian and Ludovico Centis, explores the Venice lagoon’s need for a profound rethinking in the light of the current environmental crisis, demographic decline, and the tourist pressure it is under. Ludovico Centis, 2017 CAB contributor, will moderate a panel discussion featuring Florencia Rodriguez (UIC School of Architecture) and Michelangelo Sabatino (IIT’s College of Architecture). The panelists will discuss urgencies to the lagoon while envisioning a scenario for its future. 

The authors:

Lorenzo Fabian is an architect and urbanist. He is professor of urban planning at Università IUAV di Venezia, where he is also a member of the teaching staff of the Doctoral School in Architecture, City and Design. Fabian deals with research and design on an urban and territorial scale with particular attention to the themes of ecology, landscape, and sustainable development of the city. He has taught at Politecnico di Milano, the Faculty of Architecture of the University of Parma, and Politecnico di Bari. Since 1998 and for about 20 years, he has collaborated with Paola Viganò and Bernardo Secchi on important projects and research in Italy and abroad.

Ludovico Centis is an architect, founder of the architecture and planning office The Empire and co-founder and editor of the architecture magazine San Rocco. Centis holds a PhD in Urbanism from Università IUAV di Venezia. His research focuses on the ways in which individuals and institutions, as well as desires and power, shape cities and landscapes. Centis has been the 2013–14 Peter Reyner Banham Fellow at the University at Buffalo–SUNY. During the spring of 2015 he has been at the Center for Land Use Interpretation as a participant in the Wendover Residence Program. Centis was awarded a 2018 Getty Library Research Grant at the Getty Center in Los Angeles and a 2020 Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art Research Support Grant. Centis has taught at Università IUAV di Venezia, Politecnico di Milano and at the State University of New York–University at Buffalo. Most recently, he was a post-doctoral research fellow at Università IUAV di Venezia and has been a Visiting School Head at the Architectural Association School of Architecture in London since 2020.


Florencia Rodriguez is the Director of the UIC School of Architecture and an Associate Professor.Having practiced mainly as an editor, writer, and educator, she has built a career path driven by a strong entrepreneurial spirit that led her to create and run cultural initiatives related to architecture and design. In 2010, Rodriguez founded PLOT, a publication she continued to direct until 2017 when she co-founded NESS with Pablo Gerson. In 2015 she created Monte, an independent space in Buenos Aires where she curated and promoted a very active public program. Before coming to UIC, she was a lecturer in architecture at the Harvard Graduate School of Design, where she was granted the Loeb Fellowship between 2013 and 2014. During that year, she focused her research on new modes of criticism and the architecture of The Americas. Rodriguez has lectured, curated exhibitions, acted as a juror, and organized international symposia in different institutions. In 2020, together with Mark Lee, she guest-edited America, the 48th issue of the Harvard Design Magazine. Her more recent book, MCHAP 2 Territory & Expeditions (IITAC, Actar, NESS), was launched in March 2022. 

Michelangelo Sabatino trained as an architect, preservationist, and historian in Canada, Italy, and the US. He is Professor of Architectural History and Cultural Heritage at IIT’s College of Architecture where he directs the PhD program and is the inaugural John Vinci Distinguished Research Fellow. This past year, he was selected as one of the Top Design CHICAGO Influencers in Newcity’s Design 50. Sabatino’s first book, Pride in Modesty: Modernist Architecture and the Vernacular Tradition in Italy (2011), won multiple awards, including the Society of Architectural Historians’ Alice Davis Hitchcock Award. Since arriving in Chicago in 2014, Sabatino co-authored Modern in the Middle: Chicago Houses 19291975, that recently won the “Modernism in America Award” from Docomomo US. More recent books include Canada: Modern Architectures in HistoryAvant-Garde in the Cornfields: Architecture, Landscape, and Preservation in New HarmonyMaking Houston Modern: The Life and Architecture of Howard Barnstone, and most recently Carlo Mollino: Architect and Storyteller (with Napoleone Ferrari, 2021).

Image courtesy of Ludovico Centis and Lorenzo Fabian.