The first Bologna Design Week starts: Food is design in the city of tortellini

It’s always a pleasure to introduce a new design event. This autumn, a fresh breeze is blowing from Bologna, Italy. The city with a wide historical and cultural heritage becomes a part of the international network of design-related events with the first edition of Bologna Design Week. The event starts today, 30 September, and continues until 3 October.

The organizers describe Bologna Design Week as “a diverse networking platform and cultural itinerary about the propulsive power of design for innovation and promotion”. It is organized at the same time as CERSAIE, an international exhibition devoted to ceramic tiles. Bologna Design Week offers its visitors a comprehensive program with events, design stores, showrooms and open studios, as well as workshops, training courses, presentations and meetings. The perspective is wide: the organizers state that “design’s potential for innovation and exchange between new actors and sectors has spread beyond interior and product design into art, architecture, fashion, music, visual culture and food.”Since we love both good design and good food, and since Bologna is known as the city of tortellini and ragù alla bolognese, we are especially happy to find the theme “Design Food” in the event itinerary. Corte Isolani, a famous covered walkway in Bologna, will introduce new ways to enjoy and prepare food. You’ll also find workshops and exhibitions dedicated to processing, transporting and preserving food. An interesting example is “Fashion Loves Food”, a reading about the relationship between fashion and foodedited by University of Bologna.

Another interesting theme is “Design Spot” with unusual locations, such as restaurants, bistros and shops hosting design-related exhibitions. Under the theme “Design Made in Bologna”, the local designers and manufacturers present their latest creations and previews for 2016. For example, the delicate ceramic objects below by Bifranci Ceramica have their origins in Bologna. In addition to Italian talents, Bologna Design Week introduces design from other countries, such as Ukraine. A group of Ukrainian designers participating in the event state that “real design has no limits” and tries to answer the question “what is design created by an Ukrainian soul”. In our eyes at least it looks interesting and innovative. A good example are the playful works of Nastasia Amai. We like her mirrors, vases, plates and other colorful and fun objects. We hope that Bologna Design Week has a good start and becomes a regular among the European design events. Next time it would be great to see more content in English on their website and social media channels – that would make the event more approachable also for design lovers who don’t know any Italian.

Photo credits: Bologna Design Week, KANZ Architetti, Mattia Candiotti, Bifranci Ceramica, Nastasia Amai

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