On May 9th, the new Milan venue of the Fondazione Prada has opened to the public. The 19,000 square meter century-old distillery in Milan has been converted by Rem Koolhaas' firm into a new arts centre for Fondazione Prada, featuring a "haunted house" clad in 24-carat gold leaf and a cinema camouflaged by mirrors.
Designed by OMA, it embraces the relationship between new architectural elements with the reclamation of a former gin distillery, comprising warehouses, laboratories, brewing silos, and new structures which surround a large courtyard.
It is located in Largo Isarco, just south of the city center, the campus consists of seven existing buildings with three new ones – a cinema and gallery that are already complete, and a tower that is still under construction.
The new Milan venue gives the Foundation a permanent exhibition space. It also marks the latest milestone in an ongoing collaboration between Prada and the Dutch architecture firm, which has included construction of pavilions, scenography and shopfronts.
OMA has designed two exhibitions for Fondazione Prada: “Serial Classic” co-curated by Salvatore Settis and Anna Anguissola (may 9 – august 24) set within the new museum space in milan; and “Portable Classic” co-curated by Salvatore Settis and Davide Gasparotto which opens in conjunction with the venice art biennale(may 9 – september 13).
Fondazione Prada was created in 1993 as a platform to analyze present times through the staging of contemporary art exhibitions as well as architecture, cinema and philosophy projects. Thanks to the opening of this new permanent venue, the Fondazione aims to contribute more incisively to contemporary culture, sustaining the idea that art is an effective knowledge tool. Without practicing a mere contamination between different disciplines, Fondazione Prada intends to strengthen its multidisciplinary vocation by highlighting the autonomy and specificity of each creative language. An open flexible structure - consisting of curators, writers, filmmakers and thinkers, all invited to contribute to the elaboration and realization of new projects - will guide this new course and allow to constantly reinvent the program as well as activate a restlessly evolving intellectual process.
On the occasion of the opening of its new Milan venue, Fondazione Prada will present a wide range of activities. Robert Gober and Thomas Demand will realize site-specific installations in dialogue with the industrial architecture and the new spaces in the compound. Roman Polanski will explore the cinematographic inspirations behind his artistic vision, which will translate into a new documentary and a series of film screenings. Selections of artworks from the Prada Collection will be presented in a series of thematic exhibitions.
Largo Isarco 2