Traditional Italian courtyards feature rough stone, red brick, and raw wood, and in those respects Corte Bertesina pays homage to its historical inspiration. The courtyard on the outskirts of Vicenza indeed features those qualities, but it reworks them to make it fall more visually in line with modern design sensibilities.
One of the most striking design aspects of Corte Bertesina is the use of skylights. The central building has two massive windows along its sloped roof that allow light to pour in, making the space bright and cheery even on an overcast day.
The courtyard encircles a small collection of trees from the Po Valley and a large garden area that grows organic vegetables, grains, and fodder for sale. Those crops are cultivated as part of a social farming program that gives jobs to young Italians with Down Syndrome.