Florence, 30 October 2015 – Record numbers and approval ratings for Work’nFlorence #Expo2015Firenze, the choral, inclusive project which brought to Florence initiatives targeting , themes central to the Milan World Exposition: sustainability and ‘good living’.
Eight projects promoted and financed by the Chamber of Commerce of Florence, produced by PromoFirenze and sponsored by Expo 2015 and the City of Florence, with the participation of the Region of Tuscany, local government bodies and institutions and the territory’s trade associations. Upwards of 300 thousand visitors, with the Casa delle Eccellenze and the I_Dome boasting the highest attendance figures.
Tomorrow, Milan will be opening the gates of Expo 2015 for the last time, but the projects underway in Florence continue – not only the conclusions of several exhibitions and fairs (for example, Grani&Pani and Local Bio), but also new initiatives which will carry Florentine excellences to destinations throughout the world.
The aims haven’t changed: to attract new visitors to the territory and to present the quality know-how of our companies and workshops to countries all around the world. A result admirably achieved by Expo 2015. According to the report published by the Chamber of Commerce of Monza-Brianza, the Universal Exposition upped Italy’s GNP by 800 million euro in the first five months: a figure equal to 1.2% of tourist sector revenues and which, after Lombardia, favoured the art cities above all – with Florence in first place.
A wrap-up of the Work’nFlorence #Expo2015Firenze projects
Casa delle Eccellenze (2 May – 31 October 2015)
For six months, the San Firenze complex, the historic seat of the Court of Florence, was home to the Casa delle Eccellenze: twelve exhibition areas showing – on a rotating, modular basis – products considered outstanding in terms of innovation or excellence. The temporary mall hosted 190 Florence-area companies in all: 40% from the fashion system, 24% producers of crafts products and items for the home, 23% providers of agri-food sector delicacies, plus start-ups (7%) and companies specialising in innovation in the mechanical sector (6%). The visitors totalled more than 180,000, for an average of 100 arrivals per hour, 80% from abroad. These foreign fans of the San Firenze exhibition came above all from the U.S. (17%), France (16%) and Germany (14%), followed by guests from Spain (11%), South America (8%) and Japan (7%).
The anti-counterfeiting campaigns won particular acclaim: the ‘prisoners’ dock’ where the accused in Florentine trials once appeared became a sort of ‘holding cell’ for fakes of various kinds in various sectors (from fashion to food) – to raise awareness among consumers of the risks related to counterfeit and adulterated products and at the same time illustrate true Made in Italy excellence. In the apsidal space, the exhibiting companies and the trade associations organised more than 30 events to promote Florentine and Tuscan culture and products. The visitor ratings of the 190 companies which participated over the six-month period was ‘very good’ or ‘excellent’ in 88% of cases.
I_Dome (2 May – 31 October 2015)
This spectacular installation, inspired by Brunelleschi’s cathedral dome and conceived by Alessandro Moradei, recounted the territory’s strong identity and its propensity for – and capacity to sustain – enterprise, research and creativity. Installed in the courtyard of Palazzo Vecchio, the I_Dome attracted a total of 150,000 visitors – for an average of 120 per hour.
The immersive video under the cupola was a great success, as were the touch-screens, digital narrators which will continue to showcase the excellences of the territory in new exhibition venues. In fact, once it leaves Palazzo Vecchio, the I_Dome will set out to tour other symbolic sites around the city and the major international trade fairs, to create an ideal link between this year’s World Exposition and Expo 2020 in Dubai in the United Arab Emirates.
Orti e Cenacoli (11 June – 24 September 2015)
Five dinners for forging a new ties between traditional cooking and art, three of the most beautiful of Florence’s cloisters (Santo Spirito, San Marco and Santa Maria Maddalena de’ Pazzi) and agri-food products grown at the ‘urban farm’ of Florence’s Istituto Agrario. These were the ingredients for the successful Orti e Cenacoli project, in which 310 diners (50% from outside of Italy) enjoyed dishes prepared by five great chefs: Luca Landi, Entiana Osmenzeza, Maria Probst, Filippo Saporito and Marco Stabile.
Grani&Pani (25-26 September 2015)
To celebrate the culture of wheat and of bread, symbol and essential element of our nutrition, an international forum was organized on 25 and 26 September with the Accademia dei Georgofili, Italy’s premier institution for agricultural culture. The themes discussed by farmers and entrepreneurs, technicians and nutritionists, journalists and sector experts at the four seminars were all highly topical, linked to wheat, flour, and bread-making. An audience of more than 300 technicians, scholars and aficionados attended the forum.
Grani&Pani will continue until 19 November with the exhibition entitled ‘Delle specie diverse di Frumento e di pane siccome della panizzazione’ (‘On Different Species of Wheat, on Bread and on Bread-Making’), open from Monday through Friday from 3:00 to 6:00 pm, free admittance: the Accademia dei Georgofili will accompany visitors through its halls on a historic-documentary itinerary supported by an information-teaching presentation touching on wheat (with a selection of ancient varieties), flour (with an exhibit of model mills) and bread (illustrating various ways bread is made). Concluding the itinerary is a collection of proverbs and folk sayings relating to the exhibition theme.
BIB Meetings in Milan (9 June – 30 September 2015)
Expo 2015 was also the occasion for free bilateral international business meetings (business to business) among entrepreneurs, clusters, research centres, associations and public bodies. PromoFirenze, a member of the Enterprise Europe Network, promoted and co-organised the meetings on the www.b2match.eu/expo2015 calendar, all held in Milan: the nine sector-oriented meetings brought together more than 2,000 Italian and international companies.
Firenze Fuori Expo (2 – 10 May 2015)
A recap of #Expo2015Firenze inaugurated ‘Toscana Fuori Expo’ in the spaces of the Società Umanitaria in Via Daverio. Tasting sessions, show cooking, entertainment and training initiatives alternated in the heart of Milan, attracting a total of 8,000 visitors and 120 exhibitors representing more than 250 companies. Thirty chefs participated in Firenze Fuori Expo; 1400 bottles of wine and 400 litres of artisan beers were consumed, and almost a ton of typical products – including meats, cheeses, and salamis – were offered to the visitor public.
The other projects
Many other initiatives rounded out the Work’nFlorence #Expo2015Firenze program. Among these: Jellyfish, the biodynamic barge made with recycled materials which uses the water on which it floats for its cultivations, at the FloraFirenze exhibition; visits to the companies during the Giorni del fare (Artisan Days), including nine sensorial itineraries to the city’s historic shops; Local Bio, valorising organically-farmed and territorial products and extending to vegan foods and the Buontalenti ice creams – with a final appointment in Piazza Santissima Annunziata and at the Galleria delle Carrozze of Palazzo Medici Riccardi, from Thursday to Saturday, 26-28 November.
All the events and initiatives, orchestrated by Alessandro Grassi, are part of the international Work’nFlorence #Expo2015Firenze project promoted by the Chamber of Commerce of Florence, produced by PromoFirenze and sponsored by Expo 2015 and the City of Florence, with the participation of the Region of Tuscany, local government bodies and institutions and the territory’s trade associations.
You’ll find all the Work’nFlorence #Expo2015Firenze projects, news, photos and press releases at the www.expo2015firenze.it website.