A “new base to exchange ideas, develop projects or just have fun and drink a coffee in a stimulating and open environment”. With these words Matteo Bartolomeo, president of BASE Milano, presents the redevelopment of the ex-Ansaldo’s space in Milan, 6.000 sqm turned into a coworking, laboratories, a guest house and a bar, where different kind of events can take place. A cultural investment with a strong social and economic meaning.
The main purpose of the renovation of the Ansaldo’s space, a 112 years old building, was to create an environment where the connection between culture and economy could be redefined with the idea that in the future the culture can really be the driving force of our society and our economy.
“Today we are giving back to the citizenry an historical place after a radical change that has turned it into a cultural, artistic and economic centre of innovation. Here it will be possible to share ideas and contents, a fertile environment for young artists and creatives”, Cristina Tajani, Milan’s council manager for labour policies, economic development, University and Research, says.
A challenging project, cost 4 million euro, realised thanks to the synergy among Milan’s municipality, Arci Milano, Avanzi, Esterni, h+, Make a Cube³, and with the financial support of Fondazione Cariplo.
Directly next to the entrance, in Bergognone st. 34, opened from early in the morning till late in the evening to everyone, there is the main environment of the building, an indoor square, divided into a lounge area and in a bar. At the side of the square the project includes a bookshop or temporary shop/project and an exhibition area with a small auditorium, with 150 seats.
The upper floor will host a coworking space with meeting rooms, and the guest house, that will host both paying hosts and artists involved casually in projects or workshops.
The BASE Milan motto is “Do It Together”, a significant change from the international trend “Do it yourself”. This is the idea that has driven and will drive the agenda of miscellaneous events, that aim to reflect over the state of being contemporary, in particular social and cultural innovation, new kind of jobs, urban transformation, sharing and collaboration. A synthesis of this perspective is the agenda of the first three months that includes the exhibition-workshop Visual Making (30 March – 17 April), over the graphic experimentation, the Book Pride, the independent publishers’ fair (1- 3 April), and the Chinese, France, Israel, Great Britain and the german brand Gaggenau’s exposition of the XXI Triennale “21st Century. Design After Design” (2 April – 12 September).
Text by Gabriele Masi.
Pictures by Valentina Sommariva.