As always, you’re on the hunt. Of beauty and stories to tell. So you find yourself at number 15 in via G. Jan, within one of the museum houses included in the City of Milan Circuit, among which are also Museum Bagatti Valsecchi, Villa Necchi Campiglio and the Poldi Pezzoli Museum. You are in the Boschi Di Stefano’s residential house, a luxury apartment built in the thirties of the 20th century and designed by architect Piero Portaluppi. The welcome service is handled by the Italian Touring Club.
A candid entrance hall, clean and rigorous in its lines, welcomes you and enchants you. But shortly you get caught by the flight of stairs that smells of mould and history. You savour each step, you go up countless rungs and then you get to the second floor. An apartment opens up before your eyes: bright, palpitating with art everywhere. It has the flavour of a love nest.
The couple: Antonio Boschi, class 1896, is a Pirelli engineer with a brilliant career, confirmed by his numerous patents including the GIUBO, the Giunto Boschi. And Marieda Di Stefano, born in 1901, the daughter of art collector Francesco Di Stefano. In love with ceramics and its many possibilities, she attends a ceramist course, acquiring talent and celebrity over the years. She even opens a ceramic School, in 1962, in the same building in Via G. Jan, directed by Migno Amigoni until 2011. It was love at first sight; a love blossomed in Val Sesia, during a vacation. But they had to wait a year to get married in 1927, as the social conventions of the time imposed.
The collection: it carries their names. Fruit of their joint work, in a total sense. It’s their baby. The result of assessments, achievements, financial sacrifices and consequent sacrifices in other areas. Artistically, there is a concordance of tastes, addresses and choices. Both with an infinite passion for art in all its forms. This collection only shows three hundred of the more than two thousand artworks collected by Boschi.
The portraits dedicated to the Boschi spouses, along with Marieda’s ceramics, welcome guests in their Milanese mansion. Severini and Boccioni will accompany you to the Italian Novecento room’s door with Funi, Marussig, Tozzi, Carrà and Casorati. And then Sironi, in a room entirely dedicated to the artist, in the company of Arturo Martini and his sculptures. And then, the Gruppo di Corrente, with Morandi and De Pisis. The Chiaristi, all gathered in a small corridor, anticipating the Italiens de Paris room with Campigli, Paresce, Savinio, De Chirico. A valuable collection was dedicated to Fontana, with twenty of his works, while the last two rooms are reserved for picassians post –cubists, and to the spatialists, the nuclears and the informal painters, which features Piero Manzoni with its famous Achrome. And yet, the Boschi engineer’s violins collection. Oh yes, because the engineer also liked music. A true passion, especially for violins.
Not one empty space on the walls. The environment overflows with art. “Because other reason outside of art itself has no reason to exist.” First, then, it was a house, a love nest for the Boschi spouses: a friendly place to live their daily lives in Milan, to receive their guests, converse and culturally enhance. And thanks to the Boschi engineer’s civic spirit, is now also a museum in which to get lost and get excited.