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  Outdoor museum

The outdoor museum is a sort of extension of Fondazione studio museum Vico Magistretti in the Milan area. It consists in two different tours, which allow visitors to come into contact with Magistretti work.

Fondazione Magistretti doesn't organise guided visits to the two tours.

In the studio museum is available the guide to the architectural tour Architecture in Milan with abstracts about each building and directions to get there.
The design itinerary hasn't any guide, information about the showrooms around the foundation can be found on this page.

Architecture tour
It is a tour of 14 of the most important buildings designed by Vico Magistretti in Milan.

The buildings were chosen based on how accessible they are by means of public transport and, more specifically, follows the tracks of the three underground railway lines currently in operation, “the only modern thing – as Magistretti used to say as a dig – there is in Milan”.
The selection has obviously resulted in the exclusion of certain works, which are most certainly an important part of the architect’s curriculum in a career which lasted over 50 years. Nevertheless, the buildings chosen provide a sufficiently exhaustive review – from a thematic, technical and poetic viewpoint – of the substance and distinctiveness of all the work carried out in Milan by Magistretti, in the name of “professionalism capable of turning into culture”, as his maestro and mentor Ernesto N. Rogers had hoped.

Design tour
consists in a tour around the four showrooms of the companies (ArtemideDe Padova, Flou, Schiffini) which joined Fondazione Vico Magistretti. 

This part of the outdoor museum is the completion of the visit to the studio museum, because of the close connection between the design culture and the entrepreneurial culture
In the showrooms the visitor has the opportunity to face the outcome of the design process that is represented in the studio museum through the archival documentsThe design tour allows visitors to have a look to some objects designed by Magistretti like beds, kitchens, tables that cannot be exposed in the small studio museum.

Showrooms are:
Artemide in corso Monforte 19
De Padova in corso Venezia 14
Flou in viale Regina Margherita 10/12
Schiffini in via Visconti di Modrone angolo via Passione 



Tower blocks in the Gallaratese neighbourhood
Santa Maria Nascente church in the QT8 neighbourhood
Office and housing building in via Leopardi
Tower in the Sempione Park
Housing in via Santa Marta
Office building in corso Europa
Office and housing building in via Conservatorio
“Modena” film theatre and housing in via San Gregorio
Biology Department at Milan University
Office, retail and housing building in piazza San Marco
Retail and housing building and Ellem pharmaceutical laboratory in corso di Porta Ticinese
Housing in piazzale Aquileia
MM Famagosta depot
Housing in corso di Porta Romana

 Ph. Federico Torra
  Fondazione studio museo Vico Magistretti

Fondazione studio museo Vico Magistretti was set up in 2010 and it is dedicated to the Milanese architect and designer who contributed to create and spread internationally the Italian Design between the sixties and the nineties of the last century.

It is an equity foundation organised and headed by Susanna Magistretti, the architect’s daughter, which the Triennale Milano belongs to as the official founder and also Artemide, Cassina (from 2010 until 2012, and again from 2019), De Padova, Flou, Oluce and Schiffini (until 2020) in the role of founders.

The foundation’s main organisms are the Board of Directors and Scientific Committee.

Fondazione Vico Magistretti sets out to safeguard and enhance the archive and with it Vico Magistretti’s work, but, above all, it aims to be “a non-profit, permanent institution in the service of society and its development, open to the public, which acquires, conserves, researches, communicates and exhibits the tangible and intangible heritage of humanity and its environment for the purposes of education, study and enjoyment”, thereby conforming to the definition of a museum set down by the International Council of Museums (ICOM).

More specifically, the foundation aims to serve the general public by displaying not just artefacts designed by the architect but also the design process which led to their creation through archive documents.

Lastly, the museum sets out to promote Italian architecture and design, both nationally and internationally, by working in conjunction with other organisations on the Milan circuit, first and foremost Triennale Milano.

The foundation has its headquarters in the studio at 20 of via Conservatorio, in the historical center of Milan, where Vico worked for all his career and where it is still preserved the extraordinary archive and heritage of projects and objects.

Those who enter the studio today immediately “meet” Magistretti (in a video montage of several interviews done during the last decade of his career), who talks about himself in a sort of familiar and professional autobiography; he speaks about his own Milano, where he was born and where he lived, he speaks about friends, colleagues, about his idea of design, about his rich relationships with the companies he has worked with over decades of extraordinarily intense project activities.

Fondazione studio museo Vico Magistretti houses design and architecture exhibitions and organises guided tours, talks and meetings on the exhibitions themes as well as workshops and educational activities for schools. 

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Illustrated words
Eleven quotes for twenty-six projects
03.03.2010 / 25.02.2011

The exhibition, which began at the public opening of Fondazione studio museo Vico Magistretti, sets out to portray the richness of Vico's works, and hence the archive itself, through the architect’s own words, illustrated by the drawings on display.

The exhibition is set out along a section of eleven columns, each of which contains a quote from the architect’s own writings and interviews. Alongside, the sketches on display illustrate and give meaning to his words. The projects include some of Vico Magistretti’s best-known pieces, such as the Eclisse and Atollo lamps, Nathalie bed, Maralunga armchair and Vidun table.

The exhibition is complemented with a catalogue entitled Illustrated words, printed by the foundation.

Curated by Simona Romano
Exhibit design by Paolo Imperatori
Graphic design by Italo Lupi

Photos by Matteo Carassale


Normal things. Living with Vico Magistretti
4.04.2019 / 20.02.2020
Opening 3.04.2019 h 19 - short presentation by the curator h 19:30


The exhibition Normal Things. Living with Vico Magistretti invites visitors to observe objects in terms of the practices we all perform on a daily basis: sleeping, eating, lighting, relaxing. Fondazione studio museo Vico Magistretti has put the projects and products designed by Vico into the hands and gaze of a historian and anthropologist, Claudio Rosati, who has interpreted their iconic character through the metaphors of infinite cases that arise in the domestic landscape, while living in a home. With this exhibition Fondazione makes a contribution to the debate on how to narrate design in a museum context.
The exhibit design has been created by Luca Poncellini in collaboration with students from NABA.
“The object belongs to its life,” Vico Magistretti said. And what is the life of beds, kitchens, chairs and lamps? We are the ones who shape their existence. The products designed by Magistretti for the partner companies of the Foundation are thus accompanied by interpretations of the infinite instances of our relationship with things, between biological datum, cultural construct and historical determination.
The exhibition is a way to rethink the profound bond that connects us to everyday objects and practices – from sleeping to cooking, banishing darkness to relaxing – for which objects are a means, and at times a shadow. 
The exhibition will be on view at Fondazione Vico Magistretti until 2020, the centenary of the birth of the Milanese architect, and the tenth year of the activity of the Foundation itself.


Exhibition curated by
Claudio Rosati

Exhibit Design by
Luca Poncellini with Valentina Cerra e Chiara Corbani

Executive project by
FORO Studio

Graphic design by

Thanks to Jessica Anelli, Luigi Burroni, Natalia Cangi, Valeria D'Ambrosio, Ernesto Franchi, Mario Iozzo, Chris Moyse, Gelsomino Nesi,  Nausicaa Pezzoni, Manuela Rossi, Elena Testaferrata, Mario Turci, Galleria Raffaella Cortese

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Projects over the phone
03.03.2011/ 07.04.2012

The previous exhibition and pocketbook entitled Illustrated words outlined one aspect of Vico Magistretti’s work through some of his short and significant quotes.

The idea for this exhibition is also based on a quote from the architect, which has been chosen as the guiding thread linking together some brand-new archive materials and important pieces from the collection.

"I like concept design, the kind which is so clear you do not need to draw it. I have passed on plenty of my projects over the phone".

This is how the ideas underscoring some of the best-known objects designed by Vico Magistretti actually came to light: the bull’s-eye lantern for Eclisse (Artemide), the screw for the Vidun table (De Padova), the bicycle chain for the Maralunga sofa (Cassina), the fan for the Kuta lamp (Oluce), the blind for the Tadao bed(Flou), etc…

These ideas were initially given shape in the archive drawings and then fully revealed in the objects displayed in this exhibition, which best exemplify this ready-made design process.

Curated by Simona Romano
Exhibit design by Paolo Imperatori
Graphic design by Davide Fornari

Photos by Matteo Carassale

FaLang translation system by Faboba