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Milan, a week of events for graphic design

In May a festival about the design culture and the culture of entrepreneurship

Milan never ceases to surprise: one month after Milano Design Week, which energised the city with creativity and innovation, from May 23rd to May 26th the economic capital of Italy will host the first edition of BIG – Biennale Internazionale Grafica.

Four days dedicated entirely to communication design and visual cultures, with exhibitions, installations, lectures, workshops, social projects and free admission events throughout the city starting with the central hub of the Milano Certosa District, the heart of the event, together with the institutional headquarters of the ADI Design Museum, to then spread out into the city in collaboration with the major cultural institutions, from museums to galleries, from schools to universities, and archives, graphic design studios and bookstores such as Hoepli, a privileged lodestar for publishing.

It all began in March 2022 with the Milano Graphic Festival in which over 20 thousand visitors came to explore the more than 80 events. This gave rise to an idea by Francesco Dondina who, with the patronage of the City of Milan, Aiap Associazione italiana design della comuncazione visiva, Agi Alliance Graphique Internationale, ADCI Art Directors Club Italiano and AIS Design, set in motion this biennial event with an international profile, to foster a correct perception of the discipline and the role it plays in the wider public.

To do so, BIG addresses a series of arguments across-the-board to spawn opportunities for discussion and debate: from urban regeneration to the environment, from gender identity to education, with a particular focus on the city, young people and sustainability. The event intends to activate virtuous relations between the design culture and the culture of entrepreneurship and, finally, to develop research efforts focused on the social sphere.

The programme also includes various projects developed in collaboration with local communities and institutions for education and rehabilitation that encourage the use of visual communication as a vehicle for learning and as an instrumento to express subjectivity.

For example, the book by Massimo Mantellini “Dieci splendidi oggetti morti” will be the basis for a workshop to introduce children to graphic design by means of objects that are changing under our very eyes: from maps to telephones, from pens to letters, from cameras to newspapers. The participants will also be guided, using collage as a technique, in making posters inspired by the work of great artists.

For its first edition, finally, it has established a virtuous collaboration with the Graphic Days® Festival in Turin, thanks to a mutual exchange of initiatives and projects, in particular regarding the exhibition SIGNS and the exposition dedicated to the call Neologia.

Furthermore, Hoepli will launch a call addressed to graphic designers under the age of 30 to begin a new collaboration in publishing.

This is the second edition of the Hoepli Graphic Contest, the first edition of which awarded three collaborations to three winners. A jury composed of Fabrizio Falcone (Type designer), Laura Gorini (editor at Hoepli), Claude Marzotto and Maia Sambonet (studio òbelo) will select a winner to design a new manual for the Hoepli catalogue.

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