Milanesiana under way, dedicated to vanity

Festival of 50 events across the city with 100 guests.

The 17th edition of Milan’s successful culture festival Milanesiana is under way, bringing literature, music, theatre, cinema, arts, science and philosophy throughout the city – and reaching out to Turin and Florence – until 18 July, with “Vanity” as this year’s theme, and two Nobel laureates on the programme.

This will be the first edition of the festival without the presence of Umberto Eco, “the last man to know everything there is to know”, from the start one of its most active participants. It was inaugurated by culture minister Dario Franceschini on Thursday evening.

Poetry readings, art exhibitions, movies (including a tribute to David Bowie), aperitif discussions, concerts and more will enliven 18 locations around Milan.

International guests include Jonathan Coe, Gao Xingjian, John Coetzee, Edward Carey, Péter Gárdos, Matthew Thomas, Ralf Rothmann, Uri Caine, Teju Cole, Fabrice Moireau, Carl Norac, Kamel Daoud, Jean-Jacques Annaud, Michael Cunningham, Michel Houellebecq and Ramin Bahrami.

Among the Italian authors and writers, the festival will host Alessandro Bergonzoni, Guido Maria Brera, Massimo Cacciari, Eva Cantarella, Teresa Cremisi, Francesco De Gregori, David Grieco, Franco Loi, Claudio Magris, Alberto Mantovani, Lorenza Mazzetti, Mogol, Morgan, Laura Morante, Edoardo Nesi, Nuccio Ordine, Moni Ovadia, Antonio Rezza e Flavia Mastrella, Toni Servillo, Giovanni Veronesi and Sandro Veronesi.

Exhibitions will range from composer and pianist Antonio Ballista’s drawings on the theme of vanity to the masterpiece by 15th-century Lombardy painter Jacopo da Valenza, Christ blessing, on loan from Palazzo Pamphili in Rome.

Organised by movie director and writer Elisabetta Sgarbi, the festival is promoted by Milan’s city hall under the patronage of the presidency of the republic.

A detailed programme of the events is available on the Milanesiana website.