This past 17-20 of October 2013, Bologna Connect went to Hangzhou, China for the International Design Festival to present the excellences and culture of Bologna.
The Festival also created a space for companies to economically exchange, especially during this delicate and historical time for Italy and the Emilia Romagna region. Bologna Connect attended with the goal of generating tourism and new commercial opportunities. The three founders of Bologna Connect attended the Festival: Antonella Orlandi, who specializes in Chinese culture and language, Laura Bizzari, who specializes in international relations, and Neima Sitawi, a fashion designer with bases in Shanghai and Emilia Romagna.
Themes presented and discussed at the festival were not limited to design but also culture, art, gastronomy, motors, sports and more. There were meetings such business-to-business to allow the various companies to form commercial relationships. The motor businesses presented at the Festival include Ducati Shanghai and Lamborghini Shanghai. For the art and culture,Teatro Comunale (The Opera Theater), Istituto Italiano di Cultura di Shanghai, Regione APT and Città d’Arte, Iscomer Vocational Training School, l’Accademia delle Belle Arti (the Academy of the Fine Arts), Zanichelli Publishing House (with their new Chinese-Italian dictionary), Arca l’Italiano a Bologna (Arca Italian School of Bologna), la Galleria di arte Contemporanea Spazio San Giorgio (Gallery of Contemporary Art), il museo della Ceramica di Faenza (the Ceramic Museum of Faenza), Riccardo Balzarotti (expert in restoration of cultural heritage and museum services) and artists Fulvio Fanti (who donated his work to Mr Jin, the Director of Tang Academy) and Salvo Palazzolo.
Design brands present include NeimaSitawi Luxury Boutique Fashion, Il Borsaiolo Bags by Marco Ferriani, furniture designer Mobilificio Torricelli and interior designer Maura Ferrari. As for gastronomy, il Maestro Sfoglino Beniamino Baleotti dell’Agriturismo le Ginestre (who prepared perfect tagliatelle), l’Acetaia di Giorgio (Traditional Balsamic Vinegar of Modena), l’Accademia del Gusto (Academy of Gusto of Bologna), Trattoria Annamaria of Bologna, l’olio Brisighello DOP (Brisighello oil), and Fabbri 1905 (with their fantastic topping amarene). Some of Bologna’s most famous hotels represented include Hotel Majestic Bologna, Hotel Savoia Regency Bologna, Art Hotels and Hotel Touring. 8Doors and Welcome China represented business and tourism connections. Lastly the famous Bologna Calcio (Bologna Soccer Club) presented its football youth school that has achieved lots of success and received lots of interest from the Chinese community.
During the exhibition, thanks to the collaboration of the director of the Italian Cultural Institute of Shanghai Carlo Molina, it has been organized an amusing italian lesson. This lesson has been organized by ARCA, Italian language school in Bologna, starting with the presentation of the new dictionary Zanichelli and held by Claudia Rocialli, Italian teacher in Hangzhou.
For more information about the Festival, there are live radio broadcasts from Hangzhou featured on Punto Radio. After returning to Italy, Laura Bizzari was interviewed by Punto Radio recounting her experience in Hangzhou.
Stay tuned for more pics of the event!