Fatti & Fritti - Altamura (BA)

Fatti&Fritti, a modern yet traditional shop

Tiles play a key role in a project that combines aesthetic research and hi-tech products
Santino Limonta
Arch&Geo Studio associato
Year of completion

Altamura, a town famous the world over for the simplest and most natural of foods — wheat bread baked in wood-burning ovens — is located within a region renowned for its wealth of fragrances and flavours, wholesome foods and splendid oils. It is a place where it is still meaningful to speak of «street food», where the largest McDonald’s in the area was forced to close down whereas the small traditional Apulian sandwich bar next door flourishes by offering exclusively local products. It was thanks to Altamura’s still strong cultural tradition that it was possible to open a shop like Fatti&Fritti, a traditional fried-food shop from which customers emerge holding a slice of bread and a hot bag of anchovies fresh out of the frying pan. Fatti&Fritti is located close to the old town centre of Altamura, with its characteristic cloister structure and twisting narrow streets that appear to wind around the cathedral. It is therefore a well-established urban context in terms of typology and morphology, unalterable and strictly to be preserved. According to the architects from the firm arch&geo, it was precisely their awareness of this urban context that prompted their approach to the remodelling project. For these premises that had previously served for other functions, they chose to adopt a contemporary format that breaks away from the existing context while at the same time seeking to harmonise with it. For this purpose, the splendid original floor consisting of old stone flagstones was intentionally maintained, while the rest of the premises were completely rebuilt with modern materials. As a result, it represents an element of transition and union between the old and the new, between the external historical context and the contemporary nature of the interior. The entire renovation project uses tiles as the sole decorative elements for the walls, while the barrel vault is given a new, modern image based on the use of a backlit technical fabric coupled to a metal frame. This almost monochromatic space is aesthetically pleasing. The surface treatment with milk-white paint further enhances the material texture of the marble and cement agglomerate tiles produced by Attivissimo. The combination of marble grit and cement paste of the same colour and the personalisation with the shop’s brand name in full-thickness cement paste give a highly expressive texture to these tiles, which were installed on the sales counter, on the rear wall and on the eating counter. The fact that the tiles are a key element of the project is obvious even before entering the shop from the very striking entrance. The furnishing is essential, limited to the food preparation counter, the prepared food sales counter, a microwave oven, a bread warmer, refrigerators, a few chairs in front of the counter provided for people wanting to eat in, and little else. To avoid excessive odours, frying is done in the back room. The lighting design creates an unexpected and very striking effect that testifies to the care with which the shop was remodelled. Over the display counter hang the Canned Light suspension lamps by Ingo Maurer reproducing the Campbell’s tomato soup cans rendered famous by the pop art painting by Andy Warhol.

Attivissimo agglomerate tiles
White, black, gray, pink, purple
Technical characteristics
Water absorpion (ISO 10545-3): 0,99
Chemical resistance (ISO 10545-13): 1,5
Resistance to deep abrasion (ISO 10545-6): 82,1 mm
Stain resistance (ISO 10545-14): compliant
Frost resistance (ISO 10545-12): compliant
Modulus of rupture and breaking strength (ISO 10545-4): 11,5 MPa
Slip resistance (DIN 51130): sup. dry 0,50 - sup. wet 0,58
Thermal shock resistance (ISO 10545-9): compliant
Crazing resistance (ISO 10545-11): compliant
Linear thermal expansion (ISO 10545-8): compliant
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