At the Edge of Chaos

From June 18, 2020 on the Manifattura Tabacchi website it will be possible to explore At the Edge of Chaos, a special online art exhibition curated by the IED Master of Arts Management, in collaboration with Fondazione Palazzo Strozzi and Manifattura Tabacchi.


The exhibition visually represents the plurality of complex systems created by man: cities, communication networks, science, society. Structures that give the illusion of order, actually are only partially effective. Unlike how we are used to thinking we live at the edge of chaos, trying to keep the reins of order.

The works of 13 young international artists have been selected by the students’ proposals of some of the most prestigious art schools in Florence: Academy of Fine Arts, California State University, Studio Marangoni Foundation and LABA. All the works will be visible on the Manifattura Tabacchi website, some will be live-streamed on the Instagram profile: @at_the_edge_of_chaos

At the Edge of Chaos on instagram


Active since 1966, when the first school was opened in Milan, Istituto Europeo di Design has been expanding and operating in the disciplines of design, fashion, visual arts, management and communication, in different cities both in Italy and abroad. IED Firenze offers every year the Arts Management Master course, in which the first semester final project is the development and organisation of a professional art exhibition. The students of the Master Course in Arts Management in IED Firenze are the curators, organizers and producers of At the edge of chaos. They were responsible for creating the statement of this exhibition, as well as choosing the artworks in collaboration with Palazzo Strozzi. The design, exhibition virtual layout, visual identity, and communication were also created by IED students.

Fondazione Palazzo Strozzi

Masterpiece of Renaissance architecture in Florence and dynamic cultural centre of international importance, Fondazione Palazzo Strozzi is a focal point of Italy’s cultural scene: a platform that promotes a new idea of contemporaneity in Florence, to produce and experience art through a rich programme of exhibitions and cultural activities. Always experimenting with new opportunities and forms of public involvement, research in the field of education is central, through a rich public programme and an articulated offer of educational projects. The educational department of Palazzo Strozzi is responsible for the guidelines and has worked to build, together with the curatorial team, the shape of At The Edge of Chaos.


Manifattura Tabacchi is an ex-industrial complex built in the 1930s, west of central Florence. Decommissioned since 2001, it is now involved in an ambitious urban regeneration project, which envisages creating a new district for the city animated by a centre for contemporary art and culture complementary to the historic centre, open to the territory and connected with the world. The interdisciplinary project dedicated to art, currently divided into Art Residences, independent spaces, festivals and workshops, is the ideal framework for the collaboration with Fondazione Palazzo Strozzi. Manifattura Tabacchi hosts the exhibition At The Edge of Chaos in its digital spaces.

Accademia di Belle Arti di Firenze

The Fine Arts Academy in Florence is one of the most prestigious and oldest schools of arts. Its history intertwined with “la Compagnia di San Luca” (1339), also known as the “Organization of the Painters”, considered as the first nucleus from which the modern Academy originated (1784). The School was attended by some of the greatest figures in the history of art and it is now a place where cultures from all around the world can meet and share their interests. For this project the students of Decorazione and Pittura have developed artworks individually and collaborating in groups coordinated by Professor Marco Raffaele.

California State University International Programs - Firenze

The California State University (CSU), with 23 campuses throughout the state, is the largest university system in the U.S. CSU offers study abroad opportunities in numerous countries on different continents. The guiding principle is that students should be immersed in the academic and cultural life of their host countries. The CSU IP in Florence was founded in 1966 and the students participate in the Florence program for one year.

The CSU IP in Florence offers a rich curriculum with courses in Art History, Classics, Literature, Social Sciences, Italian Language, Cultural Studies and Architecture. The CSU art students’ study at the Accademia di Belle Arti di Firenze and also work in the studios on campus under the guidance of Professor Marsha Steinberg, the CSU Art Coordinator. This spring 2020, due to the sanitary situation, the studio art students developed their artworks back in California working online with professor Steinberg.

Fondazione Studio Marangoni

Fondazione Studio Marangoni is a centre dedicated to contemporary photography in Florence. FSM was founded in 1989 by the photographer Martino Marangoni with the aim of promoting art and the teaching of photography in Italy. The Triennial Course of “Photography and New Media” allows young photographers to confront each other at the highest levels both in the commercial and artistic fields, thanks to a deep work in the structuring and experimentation of the visual language. The third year students of the Triennial Course developed their individual artistic projects for this exhibition coordinated by Professor Lucia Minunno.

LABA – Libera Accademia di Belle Arti

Active since 2001, the Libera Accademia di Belle Arti is a school of art and painting, photography, fashion, graphic and design, which revolves around the key word of “experimentation”. It is located in Florence but aims at going beyond its borders, focusing on innovation and on the relationship with the workplace. The young artists enrolled in Visual Arts and Painting have developed their works as part of the performance techniques for visual arts course with the coordination of Professor Matteo Innocenti.