Italian Photography Exhibits in Milan, Fall 2016

This time of year is great for filling up on cultural activities: the days are getting shorter, the air is getting cooler and we haven’t hit the crazy winter holiday/exams period yet.

To get your fill, why not make the most of your time studying abroad in Milan focusing on Italian culture and history? We highly suggest a good photography exhibit to do so. Photography combines both art and history: each picture is a snapshot of a particular time, frozen forever.

With that in mind, we’ve put together some info on 4 great historical Italian photography exhibits that will be in Milan this fall (with some going on into the winter months too). Check out each exhibit’s website for opening hours.

Read on, but don’t take our word for it, see for yourself. After all, a picture is worth a thousand words.

Black and white group of ducksToni Nicolini Photos 1960s-2000s
What: If photography could be poetry, Italian photography Nicolini would be one of the modern period’s best realist poets. His photos span several decades and several areas of Italy and beyond. Learn a little about what was happening in Italy during the second half of the last century through the eyes of this poet-photographer.
When: 16 September-23 October 2016
Where: FORMA, Via Meravigli 5 (M1 Cordusio)
How much: €8 – €6

Young woman headshotFederico Patellani Photos 1945-1946
What: A little further afield (you’ll have to go to Cinisello Balsamo, a Milan suburb, to see it), this exhibit focuses on the specific period right after WWII and specifically when the Republic of Italy was founded on 2 June 1946. That was also the first time women were given the vote in Italy. A mix of everyday life and photos focusing on the birth of a new country, 70 large-scale photos are included in the show.
When: 18 September 2016-15 January 2017
Where: MUFOCO, Via Frova 10, Cinisello Balsamo (M5 Bignami, then tram 31)
How much: Free admission

Two women with reflectionItalian Women Photographers 1965-2015
What: This unique exhibit features around 50 Italian photographers, all women. With the emergence of feminism and social change in the ’60s, women in Italy began stepping behind the camera to capture a before-unseen point of view. The show also features a multimedia installation that includes interviews with photographers along with their works of art.
When: 5 October 2016-8 January 2017
Where: Triennale di Milano, Viale Alemagna 6 (M1 M2 Cadorna)
How much: €6

La Scala after bombingMilano, Story of a Rebirth 1943-1953
What: Another exhibit focusing on the time around WWII (during and after), this one doesn’t open until mid-November. You’ll see lots of images about the destruction from the war and the reconstruction after it was over. There are also posters, objects and mementos from the time period.
When: 10 November 2016-12 February 2017
Where: Palazzo Morando, Via Sant’Andrea 6 (M1 San Babila or M3 Montenapoleone)
How much: €10 – €8

The Best Art Exhibits in Milan in Spring 2016

You’ve chosen to study in Italy, a country famous for its food culture, its stunning landscapes and its art history. But as soon as you land in Milan, you realize that it’s a city famous for fashion and design, yes, but also business, finance and… maybe soccer. What about the art? Compared to other Italian cities like Rome and Florence, it might not be as blatant, but art is definitely an important part of Milan’s identity, as long as you know where to look.

In fact, there are so many choices in a city like Milano, it can be overwhelming. So we’ve selected a few of the best temporary art exhibits you can visit around the city… right now! They all feature Italian artists, focusing on restored artwork, urban paintings, futurism, art in Milan in the early 20th century or contemporary art, take your pick!

Rediscovered BeautyPortrait of Malta Knight by Caravaggio
To showcase recently restored artwork, the Intesa Sanpaolo Foundation has put together an exhibit of a wide variety of paintings, sculptures, other objects and archaeological artifacts from museums all over Italy (and one museum in Slovakia). Artists include Caravaggio, Perugino and Lotto, with a total of 140 works restored and brought together in Milan. Definitely worth a visit!
When
: 1 April-17 July 2016
Where: Gallerie d’Italia, Piazza della Scala 6; M1 M3 Duomo
Admission: €5

Mosè Bianchi: Lost Milan
Ever wonder what Milano looked like in the 1800s? From the Duomo, to the Colonne di San Lorenzo to the Navigli, many monuments were the same, but the details surrounding them were very different. Check out this exhibit of paintings of the city by an Italian artist from Monza.
When: 18 March-26 June 2016
WhereGAM Manzoni, Via Manzoni 45; M3 Montenapoleone
Admission: €6

Umberto Boccioni: Genius and MemorySelf-portrait of Boccioni, 1909
Futurism was an art movement that took over Italy at the turn of the 20th century. And one of the most famous and influential futurist artists was Umberto Boccioni, who passed away 100 years ago. Find out more about this very Italian style and see 280 works of art by Boccioni, including drawings, paintings, engravings, photographs, books, magazines and documents.
When: 23 March-10 July 2016
WherePalazzo Reale, Piazza del Duomo 12; M1 M3 Duomo
Admission: €13

Milan Galleries Between the Two Wars
Between WWI and WWII, the city of Milano was fertile ground for artists and intellectuals, who often met in the galleries around the city. A number of artistic movements were born or matured, including futurism, chiarismo and aeropittura. This exhibit brings together 100 works of art, including paintings, sculpture and related documents, for a complete look at the art of the time.
When: 25 February-22 May 2016
Where: Fondazione Stelline, Corso Magenta 61; Mi M2 Cadorna
Admission: €8

La grande scacchiera installationBonus 1-day art event:
BAG-Bocconi Art Gallery
Did you know you can see a wide range of contemporary works of art right here on the Bocconi campus? Every year, the campus opens its doors to the public during Bocconi Art Gallery, offering guided tours, talks with the artists themselves and live music. It’s a fun evening, especially for anyone looking to find out more about the Italian and international contemporary art scene.
When: 12 May, starting at 5:30pm
WhereBocconi University, Via Sarfatti 25; M3 Porta Romana
Admission: Free

6 Made in Milan Brand Museums

Fashion, the automotive industry, cocktails, design and football. These sectors are all essential to Milan’s identity and business community. And each is represented by a company based in the city with their own museum. Find out more about where you can learn about each company’s history and brand. all Made in Milano.

Bodice of embroidered garment1. Armani Silos: Fashionistas should head to this museum, focusing on 40 years of Armani fashion. Sections focus on different topics, including Stars, Daywear, Esotismi, Cromatismi and Luce. Come to browse 600 outfits and 200 accessories from Armani collections. Get an inside look at the designer’s aesthetic and how it has evolved over the years.
Address: Via Bergognone 40
Getting There: M2 Porta Genova
Opening Hours: Tues-Sat 11am-8pm; Thurs and Sat open till 10pm
Admission: €12

2. Fondazione Pirelli: The automotive industry in Northern Italy is world-famous, with brands based in Maranello (Ferrari), Torino (Fiat) and Sant’Agata Bolognese (Lamborghini). But most of these cars get their tires from a company based right here in Milano: Pirelli. To find out more about the history of the company and their communication materials, visit the foundation.
Address: Viale Sarca 222
Getting There: M5 Ponale
Opening Hours: Mon-Fri 9am-5pm; reservations required
Admission: Free

Stand with Campari logo3. Galleria Campari: A brand known around the world for its pre-dinner cocktails, Campari is also based in Milano. Check out their cool multimedia exhibit featuring their communication campaigns, especially from the belle epoque era. With 150 years of history, their image and design identity are still very relevant today.
Address: Via Gramsci 161, Sesto San Giovanni
Getting There: M1 Sesto 1 Maggio
Opening Hours: Tues-Fri: tours at 2pm, 3:30pm and 5pm; first and third Saturday of every month: tours at 10am, 11:30am, 2pm, 3:30pm and 5pm
Admission: Free

Façade of Kartell Museum4. Kartell Museo: Milano is known around the world as a design capital. As one of the most famous Italian design brands, Kartell’s museum does not disappoint. Located outside the city (so you’ll need to take a bus to get there), great collections of 8,000 objects, 5,000 designs and 15,000 photographs are available. You can learn more about the brand’s history, production, materials used, technology and communication strategies.
Address: Via delle Industrie 3, Noviglio
Getting There: Take the Rosate or Motta Visconti bus from the M2 Famagosta stop and get off at the Noviglio Santa Corinna stop
Opening Hours: Contact the museum to make a reservation
Admission: Free

Cup and exhibit from AC Milan museum5. Mondo Milan Museum: For soccer fans (and especially AC Milan fans), this is the museum for you. Learn all about the team’s history, spanning over 100 years, with a focus on famous players, trophies and memorabilia. There is currently a temporary exhibit included in the price focusing on the FIFA World Cup and how its made.
Address: Via Aldo Rossi 8
Getting There: M1 Lotto or M5 Portello
Opening Hours: 10am-7pm
Admission: €18 full price, €12 for Cuore Rossonero cardholders

6. Museo Branca: With a history dating back to 1845, Branca’s museum has been open since 2009. Located in the 1913 factory, it focuses on the brand’s advertising history and the production of the digestif. And if you want to find out even more, head to the Torre Branca (admission cost €5), designed by Gio Ponti and towering 108m above Parco Sempione.
Address: Via Resegone 2
Getting There: M3 Maciachini, Passante Lancetti
Opening Hours: Mon, Wed, Fri 10am-3pm; reservations required
Admission: Free

Milan’s Evolving Skyline

Skyscraper and tram

There’s a cool new exhibit focusing on Milan’s modern architecture and changing cityscape over the past 100 years: Grattanuvole: un secolo di grattacieli a Milano. Instead of using the typical word for skyscrapers, grattacieli, a similar word, grattanuvole, was used for the title. As a bit of a language nerd, I did some research to find out why. More info on the exhibit itself is below, if you’re more into architecture and not the linguistic aspects!

Have you ever thought about what the word skyscraper really means? The two parts of the compound word have nothing to do with the final meaning, but it is a pretty poetic description of what these modern, tall buildings do. And what about the Italian translation? As so often happened when learning a foreign language, I only started thinking about the different elements of the word skyscraper when I learned the Italian equivalent.

The Italian word for skyscraper is a very literal translation of the two parts of the English word: grattacielo. But what does grattanuvole, the title of the architecture exhibit, mean? This word was initially used more often in Italian to refer to modern towers and it was actually even more popular than grattacielo between 1903 and 1911 (for etymology nerds, see the Ngram Viewer chart from Google below). Grattanuvole translates literally as cloudscraper. Which might be appropriate in a city like Milan that is famous for its foggy winter mornings.

Lamp with skyscraper in the backgroundSo how has Milan’s skyline changed over the past century? Like lots of other Italian cities, the city has tended to hold on to traditional architecture and was relatively slow in adopting new styles such as skyscrapers. But with recent projects such as the Porta Nuova area at Piazza Gae Aulenti and CityLife, which is still in the works, Milano is starting to look more like a modern city with more than one skyscraper towering over the horizon.

If you’re interested in learning more about the past, present and future of Milan’s architecture through photos, definitely check out Grattanuvole, un secolo di grattacieli a Milano. The exhibit features photographs of 75 important buildings that have been constructed over the past century. It’s located at Fondazione Riccardo Catella in the Isola neighborhood (near the Gioia subway stop on the green line).

Fondazione Riccardo Catella, in collaboration with Politecnico di Milano
Via G. De Castillia 28
7 November to 6 December 2014
Mondays-Fridays: 10:00am-6:00pm, Saturdays: 10:00am-1:00pm, 2:00-5:00pm
Free admission

Grattacieli and grattanuvole in Italian books from 1800 to 2008
https://books.google.com/ngrams/interactive_chart?content=grattanuvole%2Cgrattacieli&year_start=1900&year_end=2008&corpus=22&smoothing=1&share=&direct_url=t1%3B%2Cgrattanuvole%3B%2Cc0%3B.t1%3B%2Cgrattacieli%3B%2Cc0

Venice in a Day!

Venice is one the most beautiful cities in the world and I recommend all Bocconians to visit it! However, we do not have much time to allocate, so we must be very efficient in our Venice tour. I will therefore give you the best schedule to enjoy the city in exactly 8 hours!

1) 7:05am Pick a day and buy you train tickets! I would recommend you take the Milano Centrale – Venezia Santa Lucia 7:05am train for the outward journey. You will be in Venice at 9:40am. Check the Trenitalia website for info on specials and student discounts. Price: €18-€30.00. Time: 2h35min.

2) 9:40am Visit the Basilica Santa Maria della Salute and the Peggy Guggenheim museum. Buy a 1-day vaporetto ticket from ticket machine for €20 (more info on the Venice transport website). Get on the shuttle line 1 at pier “Ferrovia” and get off at pier “Salute” (shuttle time: 35min). Price for basilica: free. Price for Guggenheim museum: €9 for students.

3) 11:30am Stroll around Piazza San Marco, visit the Basilica San Marco and climb up the Campanile. Take vaporetto line 1 from “Salute” to “San Marco Giardinetti” and you are now in Piazza San Marco! Time at Basilica: 20min. Price of Campanile entrance: €8. Time at Campanile: 20min.

4) 12:45pm Have lunch! Wander around the streets a little bit and avoid the tourist traps in Piazza San Marco, they can be super-pricey!

5) 1:45pm Visit the Palazzo Ducale! Price: €11 for students. Time: 1h.

6) 3:15pm Browse one of the exhibits showcased at the Palazzo Grassi Museum and have a cup of coffee at the museum bar. Take line 3 at “San Marco Giardinetti” and get off at “San Samuele”. You are facing the Palazzo, enjoy! Museum price: €10. Time: 1h.

7) 5:00pm Discover the furnaces of the legendary island of Murano! Take the shuttle back to “Ferrovia” from “San Samuele” using line 2. Then the orange line called “DM” at “Ferrovia” and get off the shuttle at “Murano Colonna.”

8 ) 6:15pm Have an early dinner one of the many typical trattorias or restaurants on Strada Nova. To get back to Venice from Murano take the DM shuttle the other way around and get off at pier “Ferrovia.” Then walk 15 minutes to get from the pier to Strada Nova.

9) 7:30pm You are back at the station Venezia San Lucia and you should be on train back to Milano leaving at 7:50pm, the last train of the day!

I hope you all enjoy you tour of Venice as much as I did with my friends. I know it’s a tight schedule but this is the most efficient way to have a great trip and and visit the best places of the city!

Protip: Prices, opening hours for museums/monuments and shuttle schedules may be subjected to changes so I advise you make sure the above-mentioned places are open.

Milano Design Week 2014: 8-13 April

Porta Nuova lighting and skyscraperIl Salone del Mobile. The International Furniture Fair. Milan Design Week.  Fuorislone. If you’re in Milan around the second week of April, you’ll probably hear some or all of these terms, and you might wonder what it all means. Well, the answer is pretty simple: this week-long event is the largest interior design trade fair in the world and big names in the world of design from all over the world are welcomed in Milan. In addition, there are tons of side-events all over the city open to the general public at the same time. This is usually called Fuorisalone or just Design Week.

Salone sign on the street

The official Salone del Mobile trade fair event has been around since the early ’60s, and every year it seems to grow in scale and importance. The extra events around town have been happening almost as long as the Salone.

So, if you’re interested in design, cool trends or just seeing and meeting interesting, hip people from around the world, you have lots of options about how to participate in Milan’s Design Week 2014.

The map on the Fuorisalone website is very helpful, you can filter by topic or kind of event and you can find a place that’s convenient and/or close to where you are. Or you can download their app so you can have all the info on your mobile device. Of course, if you have friends who are already interested in one of the events, you don’t even need the online information!

To give you a general idea of where Fuorisalone events and showrooms are located, these are the main districts:

  • Via Tortona (over the bridge from Porta Genova) – this is the most famous place to hit up events
  • Brera – another big district
  • Lambrate – relatively new, but the area has a lot of options
  • Corso Como – new Porta Nuova area, simply a cool place to see some of Milan’s latest artchitecture
  • Sarpi Bridge – Milan’s Chinatown hosts a new group of events focused on Asia-inspired design

Some of the events require an invitation, so be aware of that possibility.

If you want to attend the actual trade fair, it’s open to the public on Saturday and Sunday 12 and 13 April only. Tickets cost:
€ 44.00 Ticket for Two
€ 49.00 Family ticket (valid for 2 adults + 1 child under 18)

See the official Salone website here and the Fuorisalone site here for more information.

Kandinsky: A Journey Beyond Space and Time

Palazzo Reale in Milan is hosting “Vassily Kandinsky. The Centre Pompidou Collection” through 27 April.

The exhibit, curated by Angela Lampe – an art historian and curator at Centre Pompidou in Paris – and in collaboration with Ada Masoero for Italy, it is a wide-ranging retrospective focusing on one artist, with over 80 essential works of Kandinsky’s art, in chronological order.

The narrative of the artistic and mental journey of one of the fathers of abstract art, through all the stages of his course, is well-curated and very captivating. From the very first hall, visitors are immersed in a voyage that constantly changes viewpoint, following the growth and pursuit of painting of this great artist from last century. He was an artist who, in addition to painting, practiced art in other fields: music and theater, where he sought to defend the spiritual in art, the title of one of his most important essays.

The exhibition includes over 80 works of art: from Old Town in 1902 to Sky Blue in 1940, along with Windmill in Holland (1904), In Grey (1919), Yellow-Red-Blue (1925), Accent in Pink (1926), Colourful Ensemble (1938). The visitor can walk through the sections of the exhibit in an ideal journey through Kandinsky’s art from his debut to his culmination, from the years in Russia, to those in Germany and France until, savoring a unique and unforgettable experience and delving into a setting that will have the power to transport them beyond space and time.

Vassily Kandinsky. The Centre Pompidou Collection
Milan, Palazzo Reale, through 27 April
Admission: €11 – €9.50 – € 5.50
(Exhibit promoted and produced by the Councilorship for Culture of the City of Milan, Palazzo Reale, the Centre Pompidou in Paris, 24 ORE Cultura – Gruppo 24 ORE and Arthemisia Group)