Aldo Cibic on How Having the Opportunity to Make Something Beautiful Gives Him Energy

The Italian architect on his favorite quote and how he chases his dreams.

When you have the opportunity to ask some of the most interesting people in the world about their lives, sometimes the most fascinating answers come from the simplest questions. The Thrive Questionnaire is an ongoing series that gives an intimate look inside the lives of some of the world’s most successful people.

Thrive Global: What’s the first thing you do when you get out of bed?

Aldo Cibic: I drink a squeezed half lemon in a glass of water.

TG: What gives you energy?

AC: The idea that I have the opportunity to make something beautiful.

TG: What’s your secret life hack?

AC: To be always curious and to have doubts.

TG: Name a book that changed your life.

AC: The Brevity of Life by Seneca.

TG: Tell us about your relationship with your phone. Does it sleep with you?

AC: I am not so addicted to my phone but I am trying to decrease the time I spend on it.

TG: How do you deal with email?

AC: Always thinking on strategies on how don’t waste too much time on it.

TG: You unexpectedly find 15 minutes in your day, what do you do with it?

AC: I take it for myself to quiet my mind.

TG: When was the last time you felt burned out and why?

AC: That happened 2 months ago when I had to do too many things in the same time and had been hard to stay balanced.

TG: When was the last time you felt you failed and how did you overcome it?

AC: Two years ago I realized that I was not doing what I was dreaming so I started a process with the help of different people around me to create new conditions and to allow the dreams to happen.

TG: Share a quote that you love and that gives you strength or peace.

AC: A quote I really love is the one from the musician Leonard Cohen: There is a crack in everything. That’s how the light gets in.

Aldo Cibic was born in Vicenza, Italy in 1955.

In 1977 he started to work with Ettore Sottsass, becoming his partner in 1980, the following year marked the creation of Memphis, of which Cibic was one of the founders.

In 1989 he founded his own studio and at the same time he started to collaborate with various Universities, in particular, Domus Academy, Politecnico di Milano, IUAV of Venice. He is an Honorary Professor at Tongji University of Shanghai.

Based in Milan, operating internationally, he focuses on urban, architecture and interior projects; whilst also supporting “Rethinking Happiness” – a continuously evolving investigation into the nature and design of interactive living in the modern world.

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People look for retreats for themselves, in the country, by the coast, or in the hills . . . There is nowhere that a person can find a more peaceful and trouble-free retreat than in his own mind. . . . So constantly give yourself this retreat, and renew yourself.

- MARCUS AURELIUS

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