Milan’s abandoned military hospital is filled with design pieces

Alcova curates an expansive series of installations across the site for Milan Design Week

A previously unseen part of Milan’s Ospedale Militare di Baggio complex is open to the public for the first time as part of the 20-hectare Curated by Alcova design show.

The exhibition, taking place as part of Milan design week, promises a ‘comprehensive and inspiring cross-section of the rapidly evolving world of design’, says the independent design platform, which has hosted several previous shows in the city’s former military hospital.

Designers and studios from across the world have contributed pieces exploring everything from new technology and materials to sustainable production practices. Alcova also promises a newly expanded set of food and drink experiences this year.

Among those debuting at Alcova is the natural stone brand SolidNature, whose group show ‘Monumental Wonders’ features newly commissioned stone furniture by Dutch designer Sabine Marcelis and firm OMA, realised in slabs of pink-hued onyx, satin Verde marble and dark emerald onyx.

Balance cabinet by SolidNture, designed by OMA.Photography: Marco Cappelletti
The Balance cabinet by SolidNature and designed by OMA is on show at Alcova as part of ‘Monumental Wonders’. Photography: Marco Cappelletti

Pieces are on display against a backdrop of weathered ceilings, walls and tiles, which speak to the hospital’s former life.

Textile brand the House of Lyria presents’ A Journey into a Dream’ inside the freshly opened E-Space (named for its distinct floor plan). Rolls of fabric, plush cushions and rugs are displayed beneath the rafters on old hospital and camp beds, while billowing drapes shade the patio area.

‘Journey into a Dream’ by The House of Lyria at Alcova / E Space. Scenography: Alessia Anfuso. Creative direction: Riccardo Bruni. Photography: Despasquale + Maffini

Students from the Industrial Design programme of the Muthesius University of Fine Arts and Design Kiel explore the possibilities of inflatable design at group shop Big Air, curated by Martin Postler and Benjamin Unterluggauer.

Alcova is open from 5 to 12 June at Milan’s Ospedale Militare di Baggio on Via Simone Saint Bon 1, with events and talks scheduled throughout the week. See the full schedule online.

‘The Big Air’ brings together works by students of the Industrial Design Department of the Muthesius Academy of Art Kiel, Germany. The exhibition is curated by Martin Poster & Benjamin. Photography: Mattia Parodi

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