This spring, the high-caliber international conference Art for Tomorrow will take up residence in Florence from April 26 to 30.
Founded by the New York Times in 2015, the annual congress is now convened by the independent non-profit entity of the Democracy & Culture Foundation, whose board chair is Irina Bokova (former director-general of UNESCO) and includes contemporary artists Olafur Eliasson and Ai Weiwei amongst its leadership council members.
“Since its inception, the conference has taken place in Berlin, Doha and Athens, and now we plan to start a two- to three-year period of it being held in Italy, launching with Florence,” explains Achilles Tsaltas, president of The Democracy & Culture Foundation. “This will honor and promote Florence’s undisputed lead in the arts and culture scene in Italy. In terms of programming, we will include themes that are important to Florence, such as the preservation of cultural heritage and how contemporary arts can co-exist with heritage and craftsmanship.”
Held at five-star luxury hotel St. Regis Florence, the conference brings together leaders, experts and aficionados in the arts and culture world to explore the link between beauty and creativity, questions about cultural heritage, and art’s unique capacity to elicit change under the title of Is culture a way out? Confirmed speakers include visual artist Ernesto Neto, filmmaker Amos Gitai, architects Christian and Elisabeth de Portzamparc, director of the Smithsonian’s Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden Melissa Chiu, as well as the director general of Palazzo Strozzi, Arturo Galansino, and Mayor of Florence, Dario Nardella. Panels will be moderated by four senior New York Times journalists. Delegates will have the opportunity to savour a welcome dinner at Palazzo Strozzi with a private tour of the Reaching for the Stars exhibition and tours of San Salvatore di Ognissanti church and the Antico Setificio Fiorentino silk workshop.
The conference will culminate in a four-page special report in the New York Times aimed at highlighting the themes of the conference. Art for Tomorrow 2023 will end in an weekend in Solomeo, hosted by creative director Brunello Cucinelli with exclusive conversations and local tours.
Full access tickets cost 1,500 euro.