Salone del Mobile Milano

Homo Faber. Crafting a more human future

The Homo Faber exhibition at the monumental Giorgio Cini Foundation complex is a celebration of everything the human hand can create far better than any machine; it is a journey of discovery into artistic craftsmanship and the wealth of skills and creativity of the top European designers. It is an immersive experience, enabling visitors to admire artisans at work and observe how authentic pieces that will hold their value over time are produced, thanks to the connection between hand, head and heart. 

The galleries, cloisters, library and former Gandini swimming pool play host to fine craftsmanship, installations, workshops and virtual realities fashioned with infinitely skilled know how, from the rarest and most traditional crafts to the most cutting edge and contemporary workmanship, until 30th September. The exhibition is a collection of truly stunning mirabilia. From works by master glass blowers to precious brocades woven just as they were while the Doges ruled over Venice. From creations by Chanel and Capucci to the London-based craftsman who, during the Google Map era, has developed a technique for creating entirely handmade globes. From the Swedish ceramist bringing the centuries-old tradition of wood-burning stoves bang up to date to vases that reread the last century of history by stars such as Gio Ponti and Richard Ginori. From the transport of the future with the Italian mechanic’s garage that specialises in Ferraris to the restoration of Van Dyck’s masterpiece Portrait of Marcello Durazzo, now back on display for the first time. But that’s not all, not to be missed are the women applying the technique of velatura to crocodile skin for Santoni, the painters of Nymphenburg porcelain, the linen embroiderers for Madeira, gemstone sculptors for Cartier and gemstone cutters for Van Cleef & Arpels, the noses who create perfumes for Aquaflor and the weavers of Aubusson rugs for Robert Four, in Venice with a tapestry designed by the French graphic designer Pierre Marie Agin.

The exhibition plays out in sixteen themed parts, conceived by internationally renowned designers, curators and architects. The team put together by the Michelangelo Foundation for Creativity and Craftsmanship – the international Geneva-based non-profit organisation that envisioned and organised the event – features leading figures such as Michele De Lucchi (who, in turn, brought in eight designers, including Ugo La Pietra, Ingo Maurer, Marcel Wanders and Alfredo Häberli), Judith Clark, Jean Blanchaert, Stefano Boeri, India Madhavi, Stefano Micelli, Silvana Annicchiarico and Isabella Villafranca Soissons. Homo Faber was organised in partnership with the following prestigious organisations: the Cologni Foundation for the Métiers d’Art, the Bettencourt Schueller Foundation, the Giorgio Cini Foundation and the Triennale Design Museum.

Homo Faber. Crafting a more human future

Giorgio Cini Foundation
Isola di San Giorgio Maggiore 
30133 Venice

14-30 September 2018


01. Venetian master woodcarver, Bruno Barbon. 
© Susanna Pozzoli
02. Marble mosaic by Giulio Candussio 
© Giulio Candussio
03. Fondation Bettencourt Schueller, The making of a Douglas vase at the Centre International d’Art Verrier in Meisenthal
© Guy Rebmeister for the CIAV
04. Bellerby & Co Globemakers
© Tom Burning
05. Rendering of the Longhena library, Fondazione Giorgio Cini 
© Civita Tre Venezie - apml
06. Sebastiaan Van Soest painting the gilded leather by hand
© Goudleeratelier Van Soest
07.  © Civita Tre Venezie - apml

08. Mannequin for a finger purse
© Concept Judith Clark, Crochet: Rosie Taylor Davies, 2012
Simone Handbag Museum Seoul
09. Andrea Chisesi © Open Care
10. Merry-Go-Round © Studio India Mahdavi
11. Lesage © Lesage
12. "Eilean" yacht  © Officine Panerai
13. French designer Philippe Tabet and Sergio Boldrin, Venetian mask maker of La Bottega dei Mascareri. 
© Laila Pozzo - Michelangelo Foundation for Creativity and Craftsmanship, Fondazione Cologni dei Mestieri d’Arte and Living Corriere della Sera
14. Klee vase by Andrea di Giuseppe © Creative Academy