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"Umberto Riva. La vie des formes" - Exhibition



On the occasion of Italian Design Day 2023, the Italian Cultural Institute in Montreal and the Consulate General of Italy in Montreal present an exhibition on the Milanese architect and designer Umberto Riva (1928-2021), master of 20th-century Italian design culture.

One of the most remarkable aspects of Riva's career, whose archive is kept at the Center Canadien d'Architecture in Montreal, lies in the extreme variety of his oeuvre, which ranges from lamps to buildings, from domestic interiors to paintings, up to drawing of urban space and landscape. At the same time, this variety is brought together by his peculiar artistic research, which combines architecture, design, painting and graphics in a coherent and original way.

Thanks to this ability, Umberto Riva has received numerous awards, including the Gold Medal for Lifetime Achievement from the Milan Triennale. The exhibition, curated by Gabriele Neri, is introduced by an excerpt from the film "Umberto Riva", by Francesca Molteni and Claudia Adragna, produced by Muse Factory of Projects.

March 9th - May 19th 2023
Free admission
Istituto Italiano di Cultura di Montréal
1200 Av. du Dr Penfield
• from Monday to Thursday: 9am – 1pm and 2pm – 5pm
• Friday: 9am – 1pm

Umberto Riva (Milano, 1928 - Palermo, 2021) he studied architecture in Milan and Venice, where he graduated in 1959. Since then, his work has dealt with urban spaces, public and private buildings, the landscape dimension, domestic interiors, exhibition installations, renovations, graphics, furniture, light design and much more, in parallel with his activity as a painter. His projects have been exhibited in many international venues, including the Paris Biennale, the Venice Biennale, the Milan Triennale, the Center Canadien d'Architecture in Montréal (where his archive is kept) and several galleries. He has taught at the Universities of Milan, Venice, Palermo and Nancy. In 1998 he was appointed a member of the Accademia di San Luca in Rome; in 2003 he was awarded the Gold Medal for Italian Architecture.

His architectural projects include holiday homes in Sardinia (Casa Di Palma, 1960; Case di Palma, 1972, Casa Tabanelli, 1974) and in Puglia (Casa Miggiano, 1996; Casa Mieli, 2015); the houses in Milan (House in via Paravia, 1967; Casa Frea, 1982; Casa Insinga 1989; Casa Righi, 2003; Casa Mieli Ballerini, 2004); the church of San Corbiniano in Rome (2011); the many exhibitions staged in museums such as the Milan Triennale, the Palladio Museum in Vicenza, the Center Canadien d'Architecture in Montréal, the MAXXI in Rome; etc. In the field of design, Umberto Riva has designed lamps and furnishings for many companies and galleries (including FontanaArte, Francesconi, VeArt Scorzè, Artemide, Barovier & Toso, Tacchini, Bonacina, Poltronova, Morelato, Fontana Arte, Bigelli Marmi, Driade, Antonia Jannone , Giustini/Stagetti, etc.).

Gabriele Neri, architect and Ph.D., is Assistant Professor of History of Architecture at the Polytechnic University of Turin. Since 2012 he has been teaching at the Academy of Architecture in Mendrisio, Switzerland. He was a Weinberg Fellow at the Italian Academy for Advanced Studies in America, Columbia University, NY (Spring 2022) and adjunct professor at the Politecnico di Milano (2011-2022). Former member of the Board of Directors of the Triennale Milano Design Museum Foundation (2018-2021), he has curated exhibitions and published several monographs on 20th-century architecture, engineering and design. Since 2010 he has written for "Domenica", the cultural supplement of the Italian newspaper "Il Sole 24 ore".



Date: Da Wednesday, March 08, 2023 a Friday, May 19, 2023

Organized by : IIC Montréal - Consolato G. d'Italia

In collaboration with : Centre Canadien d’Architecture (CCA)

Entrance : Free


IIC Montréal -1200 Av. du Dr Penfield - Montréal