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  Michela and Paolo Baldessari have experimented the work and multilingualism of architecture since they were young, in the studio founded by their father Giulio (in 1950) and through the work of their uncle Luciano Baldessari, a leading figure in Italian architecture and design in the 1900s.

Since last century, their hometown, Rovereto, has been an important crossroads for the arts and from its singular mixture of knowledge the Baldessaris have absorbed the main characteristic of their work: whether it's an interior or an industrial building, numerous traces and references to other worlds can be found. These are subtle links that Paolo Baldessari explain as follows: "Architecture has a strongly communicative aspect, that we can best express when we are able to insert meaningful elements of design, art and graphic communication upon completion of the project. In exhibitions sets for fairs, this approach is almost mandatory because the whole space has to send a clear message". “We apply the same idea to architectural and interior projects so as to give the space we are working on a specific identity", continues Michela Baldessari.
The landscape also contributes to giving an identity to an interior, through sharp and ironic allusions, as in their recent renovation of a Venetian apartment (in the Dorsoduro area), where certain furnishings were chosen for their subtly Baroque details, similar to famous Venetian lace, while the guest bathroom was designed so as to allude to the rest rooms of old railway sleeping cars... In the restyling of the OPT office building in Calliano (TN) - the micro perforated sheet metal used for the external roofing has copper-green tones that hold a dialogue with the roof of the bell tower in the neighboring town, recalling at the same time the material used in surrounding vineyards.

In 1980 Michela Baldessari graduated from the IED design faculty in Milan whereas Paolo graduated from the faculty of architecture in Venice. After an initial separation of paths, the Baldessaris began a complete professional union and they now work together on all kinds of projects. “In a profession that arises from the fusion of architecture and design, there are no rigid boundaries to separate these from other disciplines", Michela affirms. So even in design for example, the shared passion for the world of art can be found, with the use of an almost pop-like out-of-scale quality, as in the Molletta (Peg) bench, presented this year for RIVA 1920, while the architectural influence is evident in the seat collection Palinsesto, designed for ICF (awarded the Sedia Italiana USA prize in 1984). But then design is daily work for the Baldessaris who, for many of their interior projects, also create made-to-measure furnishing – both in the dimensional and expressive sense of the words.

Museum exhibition projects
Their exhibition design work, for an exhibition about Depero at the MART art Museum in Rovereto, was carried out in 1987. Since then the Baldessaris have created around thirty museum set-ups for all sorts of exhibitions: painting, sculpture, cinema, theatre, right up to their most recent exhibitions (also organized by MART), on the works of Gillo Dorfles or on the influence on the world of visual arts by the famous story Alice in Wonderland. Architectural elements also merge into their museum exhibition projects (the organization of space) and of design, with the “invention” of display elements that are custom-made for each event. For the exhibition La Danza delle Avanguardie (2005), "flexible" display cases were specially-designed to protect and frame the theatrical costumes designed by O. Schlemmer, while in the exhibition Il Modo Italiano (2007) "dynamic"-type platforms were built almost as though to highlight the particular flexibility (bordering on instability) that characterizes all of Italian design, including the work of Michela and Paolo Baldessari.

List of main projects

2009, Dolomiti Energia spa, Trento

2002/2004, Opt spa, Trento
restyling headquarter and industrial plant

1993, Comune di Rovereto
Renovation of Palazzo Todeschi – University of Trento

1987, Metalsistem spa, Rovereto
new headquarter and restyling of industrial plant

2006, Format Mediateca del Trentino, Trento

2006, Private residence in historic centre, Trento

2001, O’Neill store, Forte dei Marmi, Milano, Brescia, Mantova, Cosenza, Serravalle Scrivia, Fidenza, Castel Romano,Franciacorta

2000, Dental Practice, Rovereto

Medical Center, Rovereto and Trento

Apartements in Borgo san Nazaro, Verona

Hotel Villabella, Garda lake

Exhibition projects
2008, Il secolo del jazz, Mart – Rovereto

2008, Vinitaly ’08, booth of Trento DOC - Verona

2007, Il modo italiano, Mart – Rovereto

2007, Campionaria delle qualità Italiane ‘07, booth of Trentino - Milano Rho

2006, Figures and images of 20th century in Italy, Namoc – Pechino

2006, Antichi e nuovi percorsi della pietra trentina, Istituto Italiano di cultura - Praga

2005, La danza delle avanguardie, Mart – Rovereto

1989, Itinerant exhibition Depero Teatro Magico, Mart – Rovereto, Masp - San Paolo del Brasile, Istituto Italiano di Cultura di Parigi e Londra, Theatre du Grutli – Ginevra

Storie di legno, Foyer sala Nervi - Città del Vaticano

2012, Starpool – Star_lit relaxation daybed

2012, Riva 1920, Molletta – bench

2008, Tsetam Sonam Carpets, Double – carpet collection

2007, Antichi e nuovi percorsi della pietra trentina, stone fountain

2007, Aquileia, Leia – ceramic seats

1993, Horm, Chicca - cradle

1988, ICF Cadsana, Palinsesto – seats collection

Press Office Baldessari e Baldessari: Map Design Communication tel. +39 02 58107983 e-mail:


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