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Italian Design Day: the excellence of Italian design in London

Italian Design Day, an initiative launched by the Italian prime minister, Paolo Gentiloni, will be held for the first time on 2 March 2017. The Embassy of Italy in London, in collaboration with the Italian Cultural Institute, Istituto Marangoni, and other public and private bodies, will mark the day by holding a series of events celebrating Italian design.

Italian Design Day will involve Italian embassies, consulates and cultural institutes in approximately 100 cities around the world. The initiative is supported by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, in collaboration with the Milan Triennale, the Foreign Trade Institute, Istituto Marangoni, and RAI, among others. The purpose of the initiative is to promote contemporary Italian design and highlight its excellence and global success. Events will be held at which representatives of the world of Italian design will describe their experience and give insights into the latest trends in the field.

To celebrate the day in London, the Italian Embassy, in collaboration with the Italian Cultural Institute and Istituto Marangoni, will be holding three events to celebrate three key sectors: furniture, fashion and architecture.

On Monday 6 March a conference will be held at the Italian Cultural Institute in London featuring Mario Bellini, an architect who has been awarded the Golden Compass prize numerous times. Bellini will be introduced by the director of the Institute, Marco Delogu, and will give an overview of his work as an architect and designer, sharing a fascinating collection of illustrations, in the wake of the exhibition Mario Bellini. Italian Beauty, which is currently on at the Milan Triennale, curated by Deyan Sudjic, the director of the London Design Museum. Thirty years after the MoMA in New York ran an exhibition on him, Bellini will describe his experience as an architect and designer of world renown, tracing the threads running through his work by means of thematic journeys (Complexity, Fundamentals, Metamorphosis and the interesting Wunderkammer of treasured objects). More information is available here.

On Wednesday 8 March, also at the Cultural Institute, a conversation will be held between Fabrizio Ballabio, Alessandro Zoppini and Viviana Muscettola. Ballabio, who will be moderating the conversation, is an architect, writer and teacher at the prestigious Architectural Association School of Architecture in London. Zoppini and Muscettola are architects with world-renowned international architecture firms (Gensler and Zaha Hadid). In the course of their conversation, which will also be introduced by the director of the Institute, they will examine the quintessentially Italian qualities that can be observed in the work of highly respected Italian architecture firms based around the world. The conversation will also be a springboard for issues relevant to architecture in Italy today and will examine matters relating to the specific fields of Zoppini and Muscettola: architecture and sport, and the intersection between architecture and interior design, respectively. More information is available here.

Finally, on Wednesday 15 March, Istituto Marangoni in London will host the an Italian Imaginative Innovators (Triple I) event dedicated to decor and fashion. Triple I is a series of conversations between Italian entrepreneurs who have displayed particular vision and innovation and specialists in the fields of economics and finance from the world of the media. The event on 15 March will see Daniela Agnelli, a fashion consultant, creative director, and former fashion editor-at-large for the Telegraph Magazine and Vogue Arabia, in conversation with Giulio Cappellini, an award-winning designer, teacher and entrepreneur and the founder of the Cappellini furniture brand, and Maurizio Pecoraro, a fashion designer for Versace and Valentino. The speakers will discuss topics ranging from interior design to fashion, with a focus on entrepreneurship.

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