The 2023 edition of the Lake Como Design Festival, from 16 to 24 September in the city of Como, develops through a series of exhibitions, meetings, installations and widespread events. Hosted by historic, unknown or forgotten places in the city and in the surrounding area, Lake Como Design Festival aims, like every year, to make the public discover the artistic and architectural heritage of its territory through a new cultural proposal.
The event chooses the Naturalis Historia as its guiding theme, starting from the observation of nature as a common thread and drawing inspiration from the homonymous work by Pliny the Elder, who was born in Como in 23 AD and whose two thousandth anniversary is celebrated this year. The focus, once again centered on the mix between art and design, is enriched, thanks to the inspiration of Pliny’s work, with transversal contributions coming from three macro-areas: Botany, Mineralogy and Zoology. Naturalis Historia is a monumental encyclopedia, which for centuries has represented a fundamental source of knowledge for scientists and intellectuals, created by Pliny the Elder and survived in its entirety to the present day. In the 37 volumes that make up the collection, Pliny expresses his eclectic and curious character through a complex treatise that moves between geography and anthropology, between zoology and botany, through medicine, mineralogy, metalworking and the history of art.
The Naturalis Historia program includes Back to Nature, a selection of works, projects, objects and furnishing accessories from different realities united by a constant natural inspiration across different eras and production techniques. The selection is set in the prestigious spaces of Villa Olmo.
The Other Animals, a collective exhibition of works, objects and furnishing accessories, will bring the theme of zoology to the stage. Hosted by the Municipality of Como at Palazzo del Broletto and created in collaboration with a board of “selectors” from different fields.
The exhibition Between Art and Nature. Photographs from the collection of Carla Sozzani, curated by Maddalena Scarzella, presents in the former Orsoline San Carlo Convent, a selection of 80 photographs from the permanent collection of the Sozzani Foundation in Milan, offering a new look at the collection by focusing attention on those works in which Nature is an inexhaustible source of inspiration, study, reference, veneration, estrangement, comfort.
Stories of Fabrics, hosted in the spaces of San Pietro in Atrio: a selection of works by national and international designers who work, with a strong spirit of research and experimentation, in the field of natural and vegetal manufacturing, from agriculture to weaving, to the rediscovery of ancient production techniques.
The Contemporary Design Selection also returns, the open call for independent designers, publishers and galleries dedicated to contemporary design, created again this year in collaboration with Catawiki, curated for the first time by Giovanna Massoni and hosted inside Villa Salazar, open for the first time to the public.