A metal and glass sculpture immersed in greenery


The Private Chapel in Riardo designed by Pininfarina for the Perrella family was consecrated recently. This was Pininfarina's first experience in the field of religious architecture and the team instilled in the project the values that have always been Pininfarina's hallmark: modernity and respect of nature. The result is a small shining jewel that blends perfectly into the mountain landscape that surrounds it.


A mountain surrounded by mountains.


The password of the project was interaction. With nature, with light, with the elements and, consequently, with God. The chapel stands in the private estate of the Perrella family, which extends on a vast hilly area covered by woodland. The outside of the chapel is inspired by the shapes of surrounding nature: it has a curving line that rises gently from the main entrance, becoming vertical in the bell-tower. The shapes suggest the outline of a mountain, while they glorify the tension upwards, towards God.


The chapel has an elliptical structure. The main entrance faces West, and it is reached along a tree-lined avenue, with a secondary entrance facing East, protected by a strongly symbolic oak tree. There are numerous symbolic references in the work, starting from the use of water and light. The external shell, which is supported by a network of galvanised steel trusses and made to shine by an opaque covering of shaped sheet metal, rises up from the ground surface of the forecourt, emerging from a pool which prevents it from resting on the ground. A low window pane that runs all along the perimeter of the chapel guarantees visual contact with the water and projects the light reflected in the pool onto the inside walls. The use of natural light is an important element, which encourages interaction with the outside: a large glazed area symbolically links the main entrance to the sky, emphasising the building's luminosity and uncluttered lines.


Pininfarina also designed all the interior furnishings: the altar, the cross with the tabernacle, the stoup at the entrance and the baptismal font, the organ, the seats for the celebrants, the ambo and the lectern on the altar. 

The materials were selected with great care, with the preference going to local stone like Tivoli travertine, which was used with weathering steel. Pininfarina also chose materials that could guarantee greater freedom of design, for example the titanium structure that forms the accentuated curve of the external structure.
The end result is a light-filled sculpture that blends perfectly into nature, thanks to its shapes and surfaces, reflecting light while being bathed in it. It is a magnificent place to find peace and contact with God.



The Pininfarina team worked closely with Raffaele Perrella, who commissioned the work, and with Mr. Bonacci, the engineer in charge of the working and structural drawings, the works management, safety coordination and the administrative formalities to obtain authorisations.

The work of the following was also fundamental:

TERMOTETTI s.r.l.: Main contractor

CMO s.r.l.: Steel and weathering steel carpentry

CAMI s.r.l. SCHUCO Italia: Glazed roof

RHEINZIK Italia s.r.l. and Sistema Tetto s.r.l: Zinc-titanium covering

MARINELLI Pontificia Fonderia di Campane: Bells, cross with tabernacle and cast plates.

Serafino Buonanno: Interior wood furnishings

Vivai A. AUMENTA: Trees



Pininfarina Extra
Cambiano (Turin)


Riardo (Caserta)


Architecture & interiors