The Triennale Milano International Exhibition, which in 2023 will celebrate 100 years since its foundation, is one of the most important events devoted to design and architecture in the international field, and is sponsored by Triennale in collaboration with the Bureau International des Expositions (BIE) and Italy’s Ministry for Foreign Affairs and International Aid.
The 23rd International Exhibition addresses the theme of the unknown, asking questions about the mysteries of the known world, and opening up a discussion concerning the issue of “what we do not know that we don’t know”. Unknown Unknowns puts forward a new way of looking at the topic, not by means of polarisations – light/dark, full/empty, science/art – but as an opportunity for investigation: from the furthest universe to dark matter, from the bottom of the oceans to the origin of our conscience. The unknown thus becomes a dimension to be experienced, no longer in opposition to what we do not know that we don’t know, but as an element of surprise faced with the vastness of what escapes us.
Unknown Unknowns. An Introduction to Mysteries takes the form of a constellation of exhibitions and projects, and brings together 400 artists, designers, and architects from more than 40 countries; more than 600 works; 22 international participations, with a strong presence on the part of the continent of Africa, represented by 6 national pavilions (Burkina Faso, Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Rwanda).
Unknown Unknown addresses a series of themes including: gravity, seen as “the greatest designer”, an artisan that tirelessly shapes the universe to which we belong; maps, systems by which trajectories and routes are determined; the new challenges facing architecture, that is opening itself up to brand new prospects such as how to live in extraterrestrial space; and, ultimately, the mysteries linked to deep space.
In line with the tradition of Triennale’s International Exhibitions, the 23rd edition will include the thematic exhibition – curated by Ersilia Vaudo, an astrophysicist and Chief Diversity Officer at the European Space Agency – and a section dedicated to international participations, invited under the auspices of the Bureau International des Expositions, through government channels.
Together with the thematic display, the 23rd International Exhibition will also host two major exhibitions:
Mondo Reale, curated by Hervé Chandès, General Artistic Director of the Fondation Cartier pour l’art contemporain.
La tradizione del nuovo, curated by Marco Sammicheli, Director of Triennale’s Museo del Design Italiano.
There will also be a series of installations and special projects that will see the involvement of the art historians Giovanni Agosti and Jacopo Stoppa, the musician and writer Francesco Bianconi, the philosopher Emanuele Coccia, the researcher and lecturer at the ABC Department at Politecnico di Milano, Ingrid Paoletti, the artist and Triennale Grand Invité for 2021-2024 Romeo Castellucci, and a master of architecture and design, Andrea Branzi.
Unknown Unknowns. An Introduction to Mysteries is held from July 15 until December 11, 2022.