Art and Management Meet in Bologna with the Contemporary Art and Visual Culture Course in Collaboration with MAMbo

27 May 2024

Thanks to the collaboration between BBS and MAMbo – Museum of Modern Art of Bologna, participants of the Global MBA and Professional Master programs had the opportunity to join an innovative course on contemporary art and visual culture led by Lorenzo Balbi, director of MAMbo.

The course, “Contemporary Art and Visual Culture,” offers students an extraordinary opportunity to explore the world of art actively and engagingly. The lessons are held in three sessions: the first took place last Friday, while the other two are scheduled for the coming weeks.

During the first session at MAMbo, students explored the role of museums and public institutions in the contemporary art system. Lorenzo Balbi introduced the history and functioning of the museum, discussing how such institutions can build a valuable artistic and cultural community for the city and its inhabitants. Students observed how events like Artcity enhance contemporary cities, contributing to their cultural growth and social and economic development.

The second session will be held at MAST – Manifattura di Arti, Sperimentazione e Tecnologia, where participants will delve into the importance of private sector involvement in the art world. They will analyze private museums and foundations, commercial galleries, and art fairs, and will have the opportunity to interact with experts such as Francesco Zanot, curator of MAST, and Simone Menegoi, artistic director of ArteFiera. This session will give them a practical and in-depth view of art management and the art market.

The third session will take place at Alchemilla, located in Palazzo Vizzani Sanguinetti, and will focus on independent spaces and non-profit organizations. Students will learn how these spaces, valuable places for exchange between disciplines, generations, and languages, are essential for building rich and fertile artistic communities. The program includes meetings with figures like Mattia Pajè, founder of Gelateria Sogni di Ghiaccio, and Camilla Sanguinetti, founder of the Alchemilla program.

“Lorenzo Balbi has created an educational path that allows our master’s students to broaden their horizons and knowledge through visual culture, art, and imagination. Moreover, his passion and expertise offer students a solid foundation and a unique experience to familiarize themselves with the city’s cultural institutions,” commented Prof. Marcello Russo, Director of the Global MBA and author of the project. “I encourage participation in this course because, as happens in top business schools worldwide, it is necessary to promote the development of lateral thinking: the inspiration that Bologna and its culture can provide is invaluable. Additionally, considering the managerial aspects related to the art world can be useful for those intending to pursue a career in this industry, which is so important for our country.” “This is an initiative of great value for our students because it allows them to build a solid path, made up of transversal skills and an interdisciplinary combination of knowledge,” explained Prof. Paola Giuri, Associate Dean for Professional Masters. “This course introduces students to a wide range of historical and contemporary debates and provides a unique opportunity to engage directly with the city’s cultural institutions and intellectual resources, while also providing students with sophisticated critical thinking skills. Furthermore, even for the younger participants of the Professional programs, it is important to understand that art and management are not distant worlds from each other: on the contrary, especially in Italy, they intersect more often than we think.”

This initiative is an example of how integrating art and culture into a Master’s program curriculum can be useful and stimulating, offering each participant the opportunity to build a comprehensive and interdisciplinary education based on their interests, passions, and opportunities. The course also helps strengthen the ties between Bologna Business School and the local artistic community, creating a dialogue between the academic world and contemporary art.


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