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The Bagatti Valsecchi House Museum exhibits the Renaissance Art collections of the Bagatti Valsecchi brothers made in the late 19th century with the aim of furnishing the house. The building itself (situated in the heart of Milan) built along the lines given by the two brothers, takes its inspiration from Lombard Renaissance architecture.


In view of the opening of the Museum, in 1993 Rosanna Pavoni commissioned Adelaide Acerbi to study an organic plan to co-ordinate the image. Aware of the importance of this means of launching and carrying through an act of efficient, continuous communication, she organised a team of professionals to work on a strategy based on the rich 19th century wall hangings of the Main Hall inspired by Renaissance velvets in which are entwined the abbreviated surname BA-VA as the Museum’s logo. This element combines a tribute to the Italian Renaissance for providing the inspiration of the House and its collections, the reachness of the whole complex and the signature of the two creators, the Bagatti Valsecchi brothers themselves.
Starting from this element, the corporate image was tested on different materials and products, with the aim of consolidating the museum’s identity.

The brochure was one of the first creations of the enterprise, the strong impact of its logo of gold against a dark blue background enhanced by images of the sumptuous rooms and precious objects in the collections.


The cardboard cover was studied to become the container of the materials intended to communicate the Museum’s activities.
On the cover the rich décor of one of the museum ceilings.


The Museum Guide was published in 1994 when the Museum was opened. It plays an important part in the co-ordinated study.
On the cover another powerful decorative image with a detail of the courtyard mosaic. Inside the order for visiting the rooms, with colour photos.


Rosanna Pavoni contacted some designers, stylists and production companies at home and abroad to launch an innovative merchandising project; not so much a commercial expedient as an integral part of the museum’s identity. The idea was to continue the artistic project at the heart of the creation of the House and the Bagatti Valsecchi collections: just as the Bagatti Valsecchi brothers were inspired by the Renaissance to create their mansion, without copying any model in particular, so modern designers were asked to take their inspiration from the Bagatti Valsecchi as an artistic whole in order to design new objects. The Museum art shop catalogue was thus enriched , starting from the inauguration of the Museum in 1994, with products that are never mere copies of the objects exhibited in the Museum, but free re-workings inspired by the atmosphere, decoration, all the artistic patrimony the visitor can breathe in and observe in the rooms.

One example: In 1996 Alessandro Mendini responded to the invitation, taking inspiration from a 16th century stool to create a new chair that exudes an unmistakably personal style mingled with the culture and artistic creativity of the Italian renaissance.

Mendini, Bagatti Valsecchi Museum chair, 1996

Some of the objects created by the international artists and designers invited by Rosanna Pavoni to contribute to the artshop of the museum (Sipek, Sawaya & Moroni, Valentino, Etro, Baleri, Orvola, De Santillana)


Rosanna Pavoni created and edited the bi-lingual Bagatti Valsecchi Museum “Notes” dealing with topics related to the restoration of the decorative arts and 19th century culture.
The brief texts, free from excessive notes, but supplied with a select bibliography, made it possible for a large number of topics to be tackled in the series, using various methods. The result is a new look at specific themes rich in content and meaning, opening up avenues for deeper study, the intended “lightness” of these brief essays stimulating readers to pursue their own interests in more depth.


In 1998 a project began entitled “Children’s Project” with the aim of reaching a very young public.
The aim is to familiarise children and adolescents from 5 to 13 with the museum and its patrimony through both family and school. Itineraries have been worked out to suit different age groups in which the play aspect gradually gives way to learning in keeping with the age of the child. In the Museum rooms are placed, beside the files for adults, files specially studied for children and others intended for their parents and adult helpers who can thus lead the younger ones to discover the Museum through the medium of play.
For teachers there are folders containing material to work on in class, based on what the children have learnt during the Museum visit and which make it possible to go deeper into themes of varying difficulty, according to the child’s age. The Children’s Project has also been enriched through collaboration with the Pincopallino Company by the short story written by Anna Paci Colombo dedicated to the Casa Bagatti and the two brothers, Fausto and Giuseppe, which has been illustrated by the winner of the competition specially set up in 2000 among the pupils of the Scuola del Libro, Urbino. The co-ordinated image has been added to the logo studied for the Children’s Project.

progetto bambino / 1: logo, 1998

progetto bambino / 2: cut up game

Children’s Project / 3 : file with learning game. The text reads “Look at the photo of this room with one object missing. Identify the missing object among those shown below: cut it out and stick it in the right place.”


In 1998, for the Bagatti Valsecchi Museum , Rosanna Pavoni launched the project dedicated to the discovery and appreciation of Lombard craftsmanship.
The aim of the research was to create new means and materials to investigate various subjects, from the history of art to the history of artistic techniques, from economic history to the history of the development of town-planning.
The thrust of the project was an innovative census-compilation of craftsmen and workshops active in Milan and Lombardy in the builders’ yards and furnishings workshops from the Unification of Italy to the First World War.
The census was based on the private archives of Lombard families involved in the great re-thinking of town and country planning at the turn of the century, drawing from contemporary commercial and editorial guides and magazines.
Alongside the census a research into the training background of these crafts took off: objects of study were both the training institutions selected and the documentary sources and ornamental material given to the craftsmen. After two years of work over 5,000 census files were produced on a database specially created to allow a variety of questions and reading keys, thus making the census flexible and rich in potential.