Meanwhile, in glamorous Milano

Sunday 23rd April, 2023 - Bruce Sterling

Can Milan, the moneyed capital of Lombardy in northern Italy, finally stake its claim as a contemporary art hotspot? The opening of Milan’s Art Week in mid-April, organized around the 27th edition of the art fair Miart, marked a further step in that direction. It’s a slow but steady process that began with the reopening, after decades, of the Milan Triennale in 2015; the game-changing mega-exhibition ignited the coming out of the shadows of the city’s bigger creative industries: design and fashion.

And although last week’s Art Week, with its pared-back events and not-so-late-night negronis at Bar Basso, felt at times like a tame prelude to the big-ticket design fair Salone del Mobile, which opens this week, there was a palpable thrill in the air about where the city is headed. Two key events on the horizon will soon make an impact on Milan’s international standing: the opening of its first public museum for contemporary art, in 2024, at Piazza del Duomo, and the arrival of the 2026 winter Olympics to the region of Milan-Cortina, with the medal ceremony taking place on that same stunning piazza….