Born in Barcelona, Oscar Tusquets Blanca is mainly an architect, but also dabbles in a little bit of everything including design, painting, writing, furniture design, and urban planning. Recently, his firm was commissioned to design the Toledo metro station space in Naples, Italy. Their task was to create a modern design within the underground station, as well as to create a sophisticated environment in the above ground square, where two passenger entrances are located.
Metro Napoli's Art Stations is an ongoing project that was initiated by the city government in order to “make the urban area's public transport centers more attractive and [to give] everyone a chance to get an up-close look at prime examples of contemporary art.”
Blanca's firm collaborated with multiple artists to complete the shimmering, blue design that emits an underwater vibe. The walls are covered with large bisazza, or tiled, mosaics, and the escalators and hallways are softly illuminated with installations by lighting company AIA. Contributing artists include William Kentridge, Bob Wilson, Francesco Clemente, Ilya and Emilia Kabakov, Shirin Neshat and Oliviero Toscani. The final result has been voted “The most impressive underground railway station in Europe” by The Daily Telegraph–an exciting declaration that may just call for a trip to Naples!