What is design? According to Wikipedia, it is “the creation of a plan or convention for the construction of an object or a system”. Therefore, a design object is something both useful and beautiful.
These objects are tidied on the shelves, standing in the middle of a room, arranged on a table: they are shown, ready to be admired, in the houses of those who bought them or created them. If you are not part of these lucky categories, you can still visit the Milan design studios and gaze at some of the most remarkable objects.
“It is through our works that we spread of ideas more than through ourselves.” This is what Franco Albini said and it is what his Foundation, in via Telesio 13, explores. His creations combine rationality with imagination, thus giving birth to both a functional and a poetic world.
Albini called his way of designing “honest and ethical,” aimed at improving the quality of life and at educating the viewer with projects that reflect the needs of modern civilization.
The Franco Albini Foundation was built when the “artisan”, as he liked to call himself, died. It treasures several magazines, his projects documentation, a photo archive, and his most famous pieces of design. Among them, there’s the Crystal radio, the TV Orion Brionvega, the wicker chair Margherita, the chair Tre Pezzi and Cicognino table.
You can visit it every day at 18:30 and the first and third Saturday of the month from 11.30 to 15.30.
To book a guided tour, you can simply send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or call 02 4982378.
Achille Castiglioni was born in Milan in 1918. He devoted his entire life to experimenting on industrial products and, after graduating in architecture in 1944, started researching on shapes, techniques and new materials to carry out projects meant at implementing feasibility and aesthetic characteristics.
“Experience,” he used to say,” does not give certainty and security, but rather increases the possibility of error. I would say that it is better to start from scratch each time, with humility, so that experience does not turn into slyness “.
This philosophy of his led him to question the details of each of his creations, to redefine each time new limits and to study and analyse new concepts. His incessant study of shapes and solutions has honoured him with several awards, including nine Compasso d’Oro and a Degree Honoris at the Royal College of Art in London.
The Foundation was founded in January 2006 by the Castiglioni’s heirs. Visiting it means walking into four rooms furnished to show Achille’s art. In the first room, there are prototypes and models; the second includes the drafting machines; the third treasures objects that Castiglioni has collected during his life to get inspired, or to use during his lessons at the Politecnico di Torino and Milano; finally, the last room contains his creations.
The Foundation is located near the subway Cadorna and can be visited only with guided tours from Tuesday to Friday from 10.00 to 11.00. To book a visit, just send an email to: email@example.com
Since his birth, Ludovico Magistretti was surrounded by design projects and rulers. His family has always worked in architecture: his great-grandfather Gaetano Besia, for example, had set up the Royal College of Noble Maidens of Milan.
Thus, it was impossible for him not to pursue a similar career. And, in fact, in 1945, Vico got a degree at the Politecnico di Milano and began to work in his father’s study. Before long, his genial intuitions and his skill made him famous and appreciated in Italy and in the world.
He considered extremely important the study of the house: he designed several objects, like chairs, lamps and tables. He received many awards and fought for the record for the first chair made entirely of plastic. In 2006, after his death, his studio was converted into the Vico Magistretti Foundation, a museum dedicated to the great designer.
Its purpose is to preserve and enhance the archive and the work of Magistretti. Its headquarters is in Via Conservatorio, a quiet and peaceful area of Milan. You can get in through guided tours, by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling the number 0276002964.