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Italian Design Day (Maseru 25 March 2022)



Italian Design Day (Maseru 25 March 2022)

In the framework of the Italian Design Day – organized every year by the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation to promote Italian design and architecture in the world – the Italian Embassy in Pretoria, in collaboration with “Relationships Inspiring Social Enterprise (RISE)” organized on March 25th 2022, for the first time in Lesotho, at the “Avani Lesotho Hotel” in Maseru and online, the event entitled: “Regeneration, Design and new technologies for a sustainable future in Italy and Lesotho”. The aim was to stimulate dialogue between Italian and Basotho actors on sustainable architecture, to promote a transition to models of sustainable cities, inclusive, and with modern services accessible by local communities, in particular in the most disadvantaged areas.

Moderated by the Basotho architect Matjato Moteane, the conference opened with the intervention of the Italian Ambassador Paolo Cuculi, who shared a reflection on sustainable urban development, underlining the excellence of Italian design and architecture, and promoting the Candidacy of Rome to host EXPO 2030.

The Italian architects Matteo Poli, from the Politecnico di Milano, and Luca Astorri, from the AOUMM studio in Milan, illustrated some urban regeneration projects carried out in line with the principles of environmental sustainability and social inclusion, and with the involvement of young Basotho students, including a centre for children with intellectual disabilities in Maseru and the Lesotho pavilion for the XXIII Triennale di Milano, focused on the theme of water resources management.

This was followed by the presentations of the project Seriti Sa Makhoarane (SSM), aimed at preserving the historical and cultural heritage of the local community of Morija, and the architect and designer of Lesotho, Mokheti Rampeta, who focused on some of his recent projects aimed at creating new multifunctional and environmentally spaces that can be enjoyed by local communities.

A lively debate with the audience followed, confirming the strong appreciation of Italian design in the country and highlighting the interest of local civil society with regards to sustainable and inclusive urban development.