“We forget that the masters of the Renaissance were contemporary artists, too,” says Alessandro Modestino Ricciardelli when we reach the top floor of Palazzo Galli Tassi, a former syrup factory in the heart of Florence that’s now home to the multidisciplinary design residency Numeroventi. “We want to find our generation’s Michelangelo.” As ambitious as this duomo-sized order sounds, it feels within their reach.
Since opening in 2016, Numeroventi, the brainchild of now-former venue manager Modestino Ricciardelli and one-time graphic designer Martino di Napoli Rampolla, has invited artists and designers from all over the world to live and collaborate together under one roof. (The roster of past residents includes Blood Orange musical genius Dev Hynes, Cereal magazine creative director Rich Stapleton and artist Ana Kraš.) The palazzo houses a photo studio, a co-working space, two kitchens and guest apartments where travellers can stay while visiting the city. With a carefully curated collection of mid-century furniture set against 16th- and 17th-century frescoes, its design, heavy in contrasts, channels the rule-breaking spirit of the Renaissance.