The conference “I Talenti Nascosti del Made in Italy. Mestieri d’arte nella produzione italiana d’eccellenza”, dedicated to the hidden talents of Italian artistic craftsmanship, was held in the main hall of the Milan Triennale. The event was promoted by the Cologni Foundation for the Métiers d’Art and RobilantAssociati.

The conference was inspired by the publication of the volume “Mestieri d'arte e Made in Italy. Giacimenti culturali da riscoprire”, which presents the results of a survey carried out by the “Arti e mestieri” Research Centre at the Università Cattolica in Milan on the rich and variegated universe of Italy’s artistic craftsmanship.

The aim of the research was to illustrate the vitality, capacity for innovation and extraordinary cultural and economic importance of workshops and ateliers operating in the upper end of the artistic crafts field. These workshops are spread throughout the Italian peninsula and deserve to be better known, preserved and supported instead of sinking into oblivion.

“People talk about the maîtres d’art, but very few really know who they are,” remarked Franco Cologni, President of the Cologni Foundation for the Métiers d’Art. ”If the ‘Made in Italy’ label of excellence has become a unique and indisputable phenomenon it is thanks to the passion and commitment, technique and creativity of our maîtres d’art: from fashion to design, from textiles to glass, from instrument making to navigation. Nevertheless, their contribution is very rarely acknowledged and their talent is so hidden that our institutions often even forget to mention them.”

“The participation of our company in the production of the volume ‘Mestieri d’Arte e Made in Italy’,” stated Maurizio di Robilant, President of RobilantAssociati, “represents a concrete step in our commitment to find Talent even when it is concealed, and to reveal it and spotlight it by making it a tool at the service of personal fulfilment and collective growth. For our country, this Talent rests on the ‘culture of making’, which focuses on the masterly execution of an object within the context of an artistic crafts workshop, of which the so-called maîtres d’art are the utmost expression. This is what represents the lifeblood of the ‘Made in Italy’ concept.”

Speakers included:

Luisa Bocchietto, President of ADI-Associazione del Design Industriale

Davide Rampello, President of the Milan Triennale

Ermete Realacci, Founder and President of Symbola – Fondazione per le qualità italiane

Domenico Sturabotti, General Manager of Symbola – Fondazione per le qualità italiane

Flavio Albanese, director and actor

Leila Fteita, stage set designer at the Piccolo Teatro di Milano

Roberta Verteramo, restorer and researcher at the Triennale Design Museum

Angelo Petrucci, Chief Master Tailor at Brioni

Alberto Piantoni, Chief Executive Officer at Richard Ginori 1735

A cocktail organised by ALMA, the International School of Italian Cuisine directed by Gualtiero Marchesi,concluded the Conference.