The aim for the Fucina restaurant in London was to invent a spacial experience that mirrored the brief architecturally. Using the space to produce a visual memory of the Italian taste, a contemporary reinterpretation of these memories. The space designed by Andy Martin Architecture is sculpted to stimulate, the forms are organic, the materials raw and refined, as the food offered.
The ceiling is handmade ‘antico mattoni’, formed and warped like the inside of a traditional pizza oven, this sets a visually dynamic atmosphere in this raw and inspiring restaurant.
In this typical London urban environment, the restaurant interior is a haven, with softened edges and wondering lines. The street is obscured by a handmade coloured glass and steel floor to ceiling screen. Floors are hand laid marble chips set into a traditional ‘terrazzo cemento’ borders reminiscent of Carlo Scarpa’s Olivetti building, and hand ‘decaped’ timber floor finish flowing centrally throughout the restaurant.
Along with brick, marble and timber, burnt steel is dominant and relates back to the name ‘Fucina’, meaning Forge. Traditionally, the forge in Italy not only related to what we know as a fire to heat metal, but also as the traditional kitchen fire for cooking. This has strong connections with artesian process of making. The open fire pit kitchen in the lower ground floor looks through to the chef’s table, with its bubbling steel wall panels and rough brick flooring.
The restaurant is made up of 110 dining covers seated on low backed bespoke banquettes and arm chairs on the ground floor served by a solid carved marble finishing kitchen. The furniture takes inspiration from the tree, its branches, its roots. The large tables grow from the floor and the chairs are fabricated from refined and machined branches. These elements that we are in contact with, connect us back with the source, our beginning, to enjoy the perfect dining experience.
Design, info and images © Andy Martin Architecture