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In San Francisco and the Bay Area for the 2013 Year of Italian Culture in the US, Giannino Bassetti Foundation presents the culture, beauty and innovation of ‘Made in Italy’ design: exhibitions, debate and comparison between the cutting edge models of Italian production and the technology of Silicon Valley, towards a new economy of beauty.

A comparison between the multiple forms of creativity and innovation found in Milan and Northern Italy, and San Francisco and the Bay Area, to recount the story of artisanship  and design as new ways of working. A lesson of style and technique for a culture of work invigorated by the opportunities of the 21st century.

Discussions between intellectuals, from Italy and the US; between artisan workshops and laboratories of «makers»; between systems of interest, companies, and networks of actors on both sides.

Today we find US companies that hold the beating heart of artisan production in their hands, with unseen technologies, financial and reputational assets. The world also recognizes and appreciates the Italian cultural ability to understand and represent design as a form of poetry, beauty and business. Immersed in this long tradition, and with our feet firmly on the ground, we want to explore the future, where technology shifts open new ways to beauty and change the models of global production.

«Just as the World Wide Web has democratized bit technology innovation, a new class of technology that allows rapid prototype production today – and includes 3D printers and laser cutters – is democratizing the innovation of atoms» (Chris Anderson, Makers).

Italy and US are equal protagonists of this revolution, each with their own particularities. Italy building upon and reconstructing its renaissance heritage of artisan workshops, US through the cutting edge use of technology, where the bit meets the atom: two countries in the bright fog of change looking for new paths, working for the future of humankind.

Presented by

Created by
Giannino Bassetti Foundation
with the exhibition “THE NEW ITALIAN DESIGN”
by Triennale Design Museum of Milan

Under the patronage of
Regione Lombardia, Comune di Milano

In collaboration with
Camera di Commercio di Milano, Camera di Commercio di Monza e Brianza, Unioncamere Lombardia,
Politecnico di Milano, Confartigianato, Triennale Design Museum of Milan,
Academy of Art University, San Francisco Design Week

Sponsored by
Deutsche Bank, Poltrona Frau Group, FIAT, Autogrill

Supported by
Axelera, The Renaissance Link, Robilant Associati,
Berlucchi Franciacorta, C’era una volta, Voveti


  • Three moments of debate around the Italian and the US way of making by Giannino Bassetti Foundation
    •  From Taylorism to Tailor Made: a symposium
      June 22nd – Academy of Art University – The Cannery, 2801 Leavenworth Street, San Francisco
    •  Design will own the Future: a workshop
      June 23rd – Singularity University
    •  From Made in Italy to Make in Italy: a workshop
      June 24th – Academy of Art University – The Cannery, 2801 Leavenworth
  • Three exhibitions
    • The new Italian Design. By Triennale Design Museum of Milan,
      June 22nd – August 10th – Academy of Art University – The Cannery, 2801 Leavenworth Street, San Francisco
    • The new Shape of Artisans’ Identities. An Octagon of Values for the Future of Craftmanship. By Confartigianato,
      June 24th – June 27th – Academy of Art University – The Cannery, 2801 Leavenworth Street, San Francisco
    • Poltrona Frau: 100 years of Italian leathership. Cappellini’s Heroes: Explorers of Design between imagination and reality. From Poltrona Frau Museum,
      June 11th – July 10th – Italian Cultural Institute, 814 Montgomery Street, San Francisco

See the entire program