Fornasetti – 100 years practical madness – exhibition @Triennale di Milano

fornasetti-milano-@designistiIf you may have followed the Monday Motto it’s no surprise anymore, that I am quite a big fan of the work and art of Piero Fornasetti. So I was highly delighted when I found out that my weekend trip to Milan will give me the opportunity to visit an exhibition about this milanese master mind. So on Saturday morning we went right into the Triennale di Milano Museum, shortly after the opening which was on 13th of November. Not being aware of, that taking pictures was forbidden, even for the press, unless you had an allowance by the marketing department of the museum beforehand. Showing my press pass was also not helpful. And of course the marketing department is closed on Saturdays. So, memo to myself: next time…. However, there were helpful hands to get one or two images of the exhibition and of course I will not disclose the name for privacy protection…!

So, who was Piero Fornasetti? Was he first and foremost a designer or a printer, engraver, painter, collector, stylist, refined craftsman or a surrealist? Well, extremely talented, as a rich and complex personality, he was all of that and maybe even more. His work embraces approximately 13.000 objects and decorations full of fantasy, surrealist invention and poetry. Not to forget his subtle humor.

What is special about the exhibition?

“Triennale Design Museum chose to pay tribute to Fornasetti to underscore the artist’s role and propose a new and more correct reading of his work in the context of the critical and theoretical debate on ornament as a structural element of project.”

The exhibition’s path walks through the artist’s start as a painter in the spirit of Novecento, his artist’s books printing workshop, his tight collaboration with Gio Ponti in the 1950s and 1960s and the harder 1970s until 1988, the year of Fornasetti’s death, and covers a long period of intimidation by the ruling rationalist dogma of functionality in architecture and design, which confined Fornasetti to a marginal role, but still could not stifle his volcanic creativity. The exhibition includes more than 1000 pieces, mostly from the extraordinary Fornasetti archive in Milan, curated by Barnaba Fornasetti, who still carries on his father’s work.

Exhibition: till 19th of Feb 2014 –

























Photo  © designisti – all other © Courtesy Fornasetti

until February 9, 2014
Piero Fornasetti
100 years practical madness

Triennale Design Museum
Viale Alemagna 6, Milan
curated by: Barnaba Fornasetti

Opening hours:
Tuesday to Sunday 10.30 – 20.30
Thursday 10.30 – 23.00
Monday closed.

Ticket Office closes one hour before museum.




  1. Anne Heitner

    I am interested in collecting some Fornascetti wood trays. Can I purchase some from you?

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