Caffè Fernanda: a 1950s museum cafè in the heart of Brera, Milan

Rgastudio designs the first Pinacoteca di Brera’s café in the sign of a continuity of colors and materials.

On the first floor of the Milanese Palazzo Brera, on the left side of the Napoleonic loggia, a small glass door welcomes visitors to the new Caffè Fernanda, the museum cafè that concludes the visit to the 38 Pinacoteca di Brera’s renewed rooms.

A three-year renovation project curated by director James Bradburne, which focused mainly on the last two rooms dedicated to the XIX century. More than a lounge area, Caffè Fernanda – named after former director Fernanda Wittgens – is conceived as the 39th room at the end of the museum tour. In fact, it contains four important artworks: Pietro Damini’s St. Bernard Converting the Duke of Aquitania, Bertel Thorvaldsen’s The Three Graces, the bust of Fernanda Wittgens by Marino Marini and a portrait of her by Attilio Rossi.

The interiors, with furnishing by Pedrali, maintain chromatic and material continuity with the rest of the museum and propose a reinterpretation of the space’s 50s architecture: enlarged, semi-circular strips of canaletto walnut, topped by a curiously thin, antique-brass surface. The colors – petrol blue for the walls, peach-blossom marble on the floor and Lepanto-red frames – resume those of the rooms of the original project by Portaluppi.

From the bar tables you can admire Hayez’s Kiss kept in the next room according to a perspective game of ecstasy, contemplation and reflection on beauty.

Caffè Fernanda
Rgastudio, Raffaele Azzarelli & Giuliano Iamele
Federica Savoldelli
Fabbro spa - Pinacoteca di Brera
via Brera, 28, Milan
Michele Nastasi

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