We live in a time
when many curators, gallerists, artists, and designers are challenging
aesthetic and categorical boundaries, but few are as open and inquisitive to
the possibilities and potential of emergent designers than Rossana Orlandi.
Regularly lauded as the patron saint of contemporary design, the native Italian
Milan in 2008, where a progressive program continues to flourish.
“It is important
to support new designers and do curatorial work with them when they are at the
beginning of their career,” said Orlandi, whose sweeping role as curator,
dealer, and mentor can be difficult to pin down. “At the same time, it is
essential to build a commercial structure which is the basis for the designers
to evolve in their work,” she added. The gallery sits next door to her eclectic
and versatile showroom, Spazio Rossana Orlandi, which is housed in a former tie
factory and has become a go-to destination during Milan’s annual Salone
furniture fair since it first opened in 2002. “I have always been interested in
design as a private collector, this space that I found just gave me the chance
to transform it into a place for young creatives to gain visibility and to
grow,” she explained.
A new exhibitor
at this year’s edition of Design Miami/
, Orlandi will bring a selection of eight
works by eight designers, including
. “Some of the pieces are completely new,
I haven’t even seen the final result,” Orlandi recently said while preparing
for the fair.
will also participate.
For Orlandi, it
is as important to present the objects as much as the designers behind them,
“their lives, their corpus of works, and their stories,” she explained. That inspired philosophy illustrates Orlandi’s
ambitious commitment to the industry she entered after leaving the fashion
world behind years ago. “In fashion you work by seasons, a good piece of design
can last for decades.”