Microcosmo Palazzo Strozzi, a Magazine that Triggers Creativity

How a plurality of perspectives on the latest Palazzo Strozzi exhibitions became a way to improve the creative side of the curators and journalists of tomorrow


By Giulia Piceni.

What is Microcosmo Palazzo Strozzi? It’s a magazine that brings together two educational projects, Plurals and Art Matters, carried out for the latest exhibitions held at Palazzo Strozzi, like Olafur Eliasson: Nel tuo tempo (22 September 2022 – 22 January 2023), Reaching for the Stars (4 March – 18 June 2023) and the recent Yan Pei-Ming. Painter of Stories (7 July – 3 September 2023).
Over two months, the project involved seven Florentine academies and international perspectives: seventy students, twelve teachers, nine graphic designers, three illustrators and four curators. The precious pages of the Art Matters section include short essays written by students from the Arts Curating course and illustrated by students from the Multimedia Arts course at Istituto Marangoni Firenze. 
The project involved four students from the Arts Curating course of Istituto Marangoni Firenze and three from the Multimedia Arts programme, whose writings were later transformed into a chapter of a Art Matters.
In this article, we will share the content of their short essays and papers, along with a summary of the magazine’s presentation in the Maria Manetti Shrem Educational Centre at Palazzo Strozzi.


The second year of the Arts Curating course is entirely dedicated to writing and publishing, as curators or potential journalists must be able to create written and printed works that are understandable and engaging to readers. Four students, three from the second year and one from the third year of the Arts Curating programme, decided to use the skills acquired during the year and take on the project.
Inspired by a photograph and the statement “This photograph is my proof” by Duane Michals, the young writer Marines Salcedo Gutierrez investigated the true meaning of art in our times: ‟It is a dictionary that reveals the complexity of our thoughts.”

Excerpt from Microcosmo Palazzo Strozzi, contributions from Arts Curating and Multimedia Arts students from Istituto Marangoni Firenze.

Immaterial art in our contemporary era: the era of not-things. This is the concept that Giulia Piceni explored in her short essay by linking the German artist Tino Sehgal to the short novel Tlön, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius by Jorge Luis Borges: “It is through transformation that matter finds its value.”
Peace and symbols are the starting point of the essay by Cecilia Vareman, who examined the artwork Non-violence (1988) by Carl Reutherswärd to address today’s conflicts and struggles, from war to feminism: “In a sense, we must continue to have high expectations on our culture to let it be a constant source of hope.”

Excerpt from Microcosmo Palazzo Strozzi, contributions from Arts Curating and Multimedia Arts students from Istituto Marangoni Firenze.

Last but surely not least, in Solo dopo averne constatato la rilevanza, Riccardo Menichetti used the project by Lina Bo Bardi of the MASP (Museu de Arte de São Paulo) as a starting point to highlight the importance and significance of art in our lives: “We could also say that, if we choose not to include art in the visual horizon of our lives, however, art would still act on us.”


The objective was to create a well-structured and thought-out project, as articulated by Martino Margheri, who is responsible for educational activities for universities, academies and special projects at Fondazione Palazzo Strozzi. During the presentation held on July 20, at Palazzo Strozzi, Margheri presented not only the content of the Microcosmo magazine but also its physical form.

Featuring a thick matte textured paper that will delight any printed paper lover, each page of the Art Matters section is a little universe in itself, reflecting the sensibility of the individuals involved in the project. Plurals – a project involving artists from other Florence academies – features thick, glossy pages to set one project aside from another.
The text sections use dyslexia-proof fonts, making them beautiful, practical, and inclusive for everyone.
As you await your own copy, you can look at its online version here.

Giulia Piceni is an undergraduate Arts Curating student at Istituto Marangoni Firenze.

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