In the name of Ernesto Gismondi. There are tears that must be told. Those of Carlotta De Bevilacqua, ceo of Artemide and wife of the founder of the lighting brand who passed away last December, are the seal of a story that blends life, design and industry.
At Design Week, Artemide presents, together with the new collections and the installation Il Mondo di Ernesto at INTERNI Creative Connections, the new Exhibition Center designed by Mario Cucinella in Pregnana Milanese, on the same site as the factory. Inevitable, to tell the last chapter of an exciting story, starting from where it all began, sixty-one years ago.
"We are here to talk about light and, as Ernesto said, light is part of space and space is project", says De Bevilacqua, moved, introducing both the center and the novelties in the catalog signed by the usual list of international architects - from Bjarke Ingels to Norman Foster via Cucinella himself. A catalog enriched by the collaboration with chef Davide Oldani (the Bontà lamp is designed to enhance the food experience with the right light) and with a delicious creation designed by Davide Oppizzi to interpret the value of biodiversity: Needoo, an outdoor bollard that it emits the necessary light, without altering the natural balance, and on top it bears a shelter for birds.
The new Artemide Exhibition Center is an exhibition area connected to the Innovation Center in the Pregnana Milanese Headquarters, destined to become a permanent exhibition site but in constant evolution to show light in all its forms.
"It is a living space that combines the history and future of the company with an interactive and digital experience, a story of contents and dialogue with the most innovative management and communication systems", explains the CEO. Directly connected to the testing and certification laboratories and to the research and development department, close to the design and production offices, it is a direct expression of Artemide's know-how, showing its ideas, skills, and core values such as sustainability.
Training and research will be the heart of this center in which to experiment and experience the most advanced Artemide innovation. Starting with Integralis, the technology that combines light, design and sanitation. The space is defined by an architectural ribbon that runs smoothly across over 1000 square meters, generating environments in which light is the protagonist. The curved lines of the walls break and overlap to create passages and divide the space without closures but with cuts of light. "I was interested in connecting the 'sign' of Artemide with the care of the design of its products, drawing on the company's research philosophy, to create an open and flexible space where you can fully experience the light" Mario Cucinella explains. "The 'sign' is re-proposed in the dynamism and movement of a 'narrative tape' that creates a continuum with the outside and accompanies the viewer within an experiential journey. Between light and shadow we arrive at a garden where elegance, design and lighting blend with nature ”.
Open and permeable between inside and outside, between built and nature, the center is part of an industrial building that is not masked, but allowed to be glimpsed by the openings in the false ceilings. These generate a dialogue between existing and built, between natural and artificial light. The Artemide Exhibition Center is not a place designed only to present the brand's collections and services, but also a space in which to host and listen, open to dialogue, exchange and relationship. “To be understood, light needs its spaces, to illuminate our common future it must feed on cross-knowledge and depth of knowledge. In this living space we want to interpret the design of light as a project capable of giving a perspective ".
The new creations, signed by Big, Foster + Partners, Herzog & de Meuron, Mario Cucinella, by De Bevilacqua herself, by Davide Oppizzi and by Alexander Bellmann are already on display in the space.
The partnership between Artemide and Mario Cucinella is also renewed in the Courtyard of the Pharmacy of the University of Milan, where the architect designed the installation Ernesto's world.