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My Favourite Things: Ilaria Bonacossa, director of Artissima

Art historian and curator Ilaria Bonacossa has built her impressive art collection through relationships with artists over many years.

Ilaria Bonacossa (c) Giorgio Perrotino/Artissima

Bonacossa's apartment in the centre of Milan, previously her grandparents’ house, is filled with remarkable pieces. Unsurprisingly so, as the director of Turin-based art fair Artissima, she has an eye for a masterpiece.

Here she describes her personal favourites from her collection.


Fresh History Painting (2000), A Constructed World

Fresh History Painting (2000) is a painting that draws on a performance of Australian duo A Constructed World. I viewed this performance live in San Gimignano, Italy; it represented the idea that everyone has access to contemporary art and that it is not only for an insider group.


To unveil and reveal (1992) Alighiero Boetti

My personal hero for his unique poetic conceptual practice. Boetti (1940-1994), in a small tapestry made by Afghanistan women To Unveil and Reveal (1992), turns word puns and opposites into mantras for reflection, while questioning the idea of the uniqueness of each artwork.


Untitled (2005), Piero Golia

Untitled (2005) is part of a series of large minimal drawings by Piero Golia that elevate insignificant objects of his studio to important subjects, ironically playing with the idea of fame and added artistic value. His playful and conceptual vision has made it the central piece in my daughter’s room. 


Pilar, Oaxaca series, (2017), Adrien Missika

The magic of Adrien Missika’s Botanical Frottage – Pilar, Oaxaca series, (2017), made during his travel in Mexico, lies in the fusion between natural and technological (he strokes the plants with a portable scanner), allowing for a positive development of our society, where man can partake in nature’s growth and not in its destruction.


Petite Operá, Aldo Mondino

Italian post-modern painter and sculpture Aldo Mondino (1938-2005) created Petite Operá in the mid-1990s: a small bronze sculpture where a fish stands in classical ballet shoes in third position. The opposite of a mermaid, it suggests the possibility of looking at reality from an unexpected point of view.

 This article originally appeared in Billionaire's Visionaries Issue, March 2019. To subscribe contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.