The new millennium has seen us to reclaim large industrial structures left over from the 19th Century and transform them into settings for art and culture. This was also the case for a large distillery – neglected years ago – located in the southern outskirts of Milan, a 19 km2 area that is today a versatile, creative and undeniably cool part of town.
A dream made reality by the expertise and the genius of Rem Koolhaas, the distillery is now the new headquarters of the Fondazione Prada, a project aiming to give citizens back their spaces, along with a healthy dose of fantasy, creativity and innovation.
The new Fondazione Prada headquarters were inaugurated in early May 2015, harnessing the wave of media attention generated by Expo 2015 Milano.
The space is now equipped to accommodate both temporary exhibitions and permanent collections. Stand-out collections include Il Trittico in the Cisterna area, by Eva Hessa, Damien Hirst and Pino Pascali, and An Introduction, in the South area, which brings together the collections and the works of Miuccia Prada and Patrizio Bertelli. Meanwhile, the North gallery is home to the In Part exhibition: a captivating journey into the world of the human body, its meaning and its image, mapped out by some of the foremost artists in the cultural panorama, including Lucio Fontana and Maurizio Cattelan.
Yet this outpouring of art, though certainly the central axis around which the entire Fondazione Prada project revolves, is not the only good reason to visit the space in Largo Isarco.
The Fondazione Prada is also a place where you can meet up to leaf through some tome or another in the Library, an area free to access even without a ticket, or simply sip on a coffee or aperitif in an intriguing, creative setting that draws on the typical design of vintage Milanese bars. It’s called Bar Luce, a forum for sharing and exchange, open from 9 in the morning until 10 at night and devised by director Wes Anderson. Packed with inspired design, stunning furnishings and an unmistakeable style that oozes 1960s Milanese charm, the bar also features such cinematographic masterpieces as Rocco and his Brothers, by Visconti, and Miracle in Milan, by Vittorio De Sica.
Much more than a museum or art gallery, the Fondazione Prada is a fully fledged cultural institution and an expression of Milan in the new millennium.
Pulsating, intense, frenetic and teaming with ideas and impulse, the Fondazione Prada is the perfect place to open your mind, search for inspiration and join the pursuit of innovation and new points of view.