Fabiani Max

30/03/2020

The architect Massimiliano (Max) Fabiani, whose name is linked to Gorizia for the construction of various buildings and the proposal of many projects, including the city's master plan drawn up in 1925 and subsequent reworking, and for his death in Gorizia on August 12, 1962, was born in San Daniele del Carso on April 29, 1865. He attended the Realschule in Ljubljana and the Polytechnic in Vienna. Then he won the prestigious Ghega Prize, a scholarship that allowed him a three year specialization trip and that opened the doors to the collaboration with Otto Wagner: in Vienna he designed the magnificent Urania complex (Photo below). His first intervention in Gorizia dates back to 1903, when he designed the Trgovski Dom building (House of the consortium of Slovenian merchants, later home of the Paternolli bookshop and now the Intendenza di Finanza). But Fabiani's real "Gorizia" period began in 1917, when he was called to head the Reconstruction Office. He kept the position also when, at the end of the conflict, Gorizia passed under the Italian administration. In this capacity he played a leading role in the reconstruction of the city seriously damaged by the war: if not his own, at least the more than three hundred buildings built or radically restored between 1917 and 1922 were built according to his indications. In the same period he drew up the town-planning plans for the towns and villages of the Isonzo and Vipacco valleys, the plain of Gorizia, the Vallone, the lower Isonzo, as well as the neighbouring towns of Gorizia (Lucinico, Piedimonte, Salcano, Piuma). These were the years when he drew up the town-planning plan for the city (1925) and the completion (or rather, as he himself defined it, the "definitive rearrangement") of the church of the Sacred Heart.

In 1935 he returned to his hometown, where he was podestà. In this period he planned the enlargement of the Ursuline school, the transformation of Piazza della Vittoria with the monument to the Third Army and, discarded this solution, a proposal for the urban planning of the square that would make it the administrative center of the city. During the Second World War, after having lost its archive in a bombardment, it moved back to Gorizia. In the city, his are the monument to the Sixth Battle of the Isonzo near the bridge of Piuma, the monument to St. Francis in the homonymous square and the enlargement of the Town Hall. Still to remember the project of an elevator that joins Piazza della Vittoria to the Castle and a study for the exploitation of the floods of the Isonzo. He was always attentive to the urban planning problems of his adopted city, intervening with projects and proposals also through the press on the redevelopment of Piazza della Vittoria and the possibility of creating a square next to the Verdi Theatre, in the area between Via Nizza and Via Diaz. Still alive, he was named after a street in Ljubljana, a city for which he had designed the town plan in 1895. A street in Gorizia also bears his name, as does the Art Institute.