illycaffè, partner of ARCOmadrid presents the illy Art Collection signed by Mona Hatoum and the 15th edition of illySustainArt

The illy lounge at the art fair will feature the cups and cans signed by renowned Palestinian artist, Mona Hatoum.
The illy Lounge will also host the announcement of illySustainArt award’s winner.

Trieste - Madrid, February 23rd, 2022 – illycaffè is the official partner of ARCOmadrid, the contemporary art fair which will be held in the Spanish capital from February 23rd to 27th, 2022, and will celebrate its 40th anniversary.  

illy is a global coffee brand founded in Trieste in 1933 and recognised for its sustainable quality and for its commitment to contemporary art over the last 30 years, which has influenced illy to transform an everyday object, such as the white espresso cup, into one of the most diverse and accessible collections of art objects in the world.

At ARCOmadrid illycaffè will present the new illy Art Collection and the matching cans signed by Mona Hatoum, the internationally renowned artist whose poetry and politics play out in installations, sculptures, videos, photos, and works on paper. In this particular illy Art Collection, the patterns and colours decorated onto the cups and cans recall the typical pattern of the keffyeh, a traditional Arab headdress. Decorated with fishing nets and olive leaves, the artist narrates a profound history of work, sacrifice, and relationships onto the cups and cans.

Those who visit the illy Caffè lounge, located in Stand 7B26 in Pavilion 7, will discover the new illy Art Collection signed by Mona Hatoum and immerse themselves in an environment in which beauty and goodness are blended together, ensconced in the sophisticated design that signifies the signature style of the work of the Lebanese-born artist combined with the aroma of illy’s unique blend. The illy lounge will also host the announcement of the winner of illySustainArt, an award for emerging artists created by illycaffè in collaboration with ARCOmadrid, for the 15th edition.

The award, which is given to young artists from coffee-producing countries who exhibit their work at the fair, consists of a € 15,000 cash prize.

“We are proud to be partners with ARCOmadrid, one of the leading international contemporary art fairs, which we have successfully collaborated with since 2005 celebrating all elements of creativity” says Carlo Bach, illycaffè’s artistic director.

Visitors will also be able to enjoy an illy espresso at “Restaurante italiano Nonsolocaffè”, located at Stand 9C28 in Pavilion 9 or, outside the fair, by #illyWalk, an itinerary of taste comprised of a selection of bars, restaurants, and hotels in Madrid.

illy and contemporary art - illy Art Collection
The search for, discovery, and enhancement of beauty and that which is new are distinctive characteristics of illy’s corporate culture. In order to make the most of them, the Trieste-based company is collaborating with the main global contemporary art fairs and with leading Spanish art institutions, such as ARCOmadrid, Museo Reina Sofía, the Thyssen-Bornemizsa Foundation, Círculo de Bellas Artes, Guggenheim Bilbao, MACBA and the Barcelona Museum of Design.

For illycaffè, whose distinctive values are Good, Goodness, and Beauty, contemporary art joins beauty to taste. The beauty illycaffè strives to achieve is inspired by the ancient Greek concept of kalokagathìa, which combines kalòs (that which is beautiful) and agathòs (that which is good) to create a new meaning in which beauty and goodness become one, each depending on the other.

The illy Art Collection cups are a tangible expression of this concept. This project was launched in 1991, and through it the company transformed an everyday object into a blank canvas by inviting contemporary artists to express their creativity onto the espresso cup that Matteo Thun designed for illy. Over the years, this canvas has featured the work of over 100 internationally renowned artists, including Michelangelo Pistoletto, Marina Abramović, Anish Kapoor, James Rosenquist, William Kentridge, Yoko Ono, Gillo Dorfles, Robert Wilson, Ai Weiwei and others…

Coffee lovers sipping an illy espresso from a cup designed by an artist combine the aroma and flavour of the illy blend with a complete aesthetic, visual, and tactile experience, entering into a relationship with contemporary art.