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"MARIO BELLINI. Italian Beauty" - La Triennale di Milano, Italy

Mario Bellini: Italian Beauty is the title of the exhibition that La Triennale di Milano is devoting to the entire works of the worldfamous Milanese architect, from 19 January to 19 March 2017. The sweeping overview spans almost 60 years of design, architecture, exhibition design and more besides.  This retrospective exhibition opens exactly thirty years since the show devoted to him by MoMA in New York. The MoMA exhibition in 1987 examined his activities as a designer, which even then were represented by 25 works in its permanent collection. 1987 proved to be a watershed year for Bellini, who from that year on has devoted himself mainly to architecture on a large scale and to urban design.

This is therefore a tribute to the remarkable, many-sided work of an Italian designer who has achieved all manner of success on both the small scale (eight Compasso d’Oro awards, and objects and furnishings that have become icons in homes and offices around the world, often anticipating or revolutionixing tastes and styles), and on the large scale (conference centres, trade fair venues and museums from Japan to the USA, Germany and Australia and, in 2012, the Department of Islamic Art – a golden wave for the most prestigious museum in the world, the Louvre in Paris).

The exhibition is spread out over more than ten thousand square feet and is divided into a Portal, a Gallery, a Piazza and four Stanze, each with a guiding theme. Its aim is to focus attention on the need for, and on the subversive and redeeming role of, beauty. Hence the subtitle “Italian Beauty”.

The curator of the exhibition is Deyan Sudjic, director of the Design Museum in London. With Ermanno Ranzani (architecture) and Marco Sammicheli (design). The video installations are by 3D Produzioni, directed by Giovanni Piscaglia.

The installation design is by Mario Bellini himself, for ever since 1962 he has always been keen on staging exhibitions, mainly of art and architecture.

On display some pieces realized by Riva 1920 like Kono stool, X Table and Tavola Armonica, project conceived for Refettorio Ambrosiano in Milan.

The catalogue published by Silvana Editoriale is actually more a critical work than a catalogue of the exhibition. The editor and author of the introduction is Francesco Moschini, and it has a preface by Germano Celant, and essays by Deyan Sudjic, Ermanno Ranzani, Marco Sammicheli, Enrico Morteo, Italo Lupi, Kurt Foster, Franco Purini, Marco Romano, Carlo Arturo Quintavalle, Francesco Binfarè, and Vittorio Sgarbi, among others.