The Gianfranco Ferré Research Center, Digital Innovation for the Creative and Cultural Industries is established by Politecnico di Milano in December 2021, following the Ferré family's donation of the archive and headquarters of the Gianfranco Ferré Foundation.
The Foundation, operational from 2008 to 2021, was created with the aim of preserving, organizing and making available to the public - primarily in the form of a virtual archive - everything that documents the designer's creative activity. The Foundation's activities have led first and foremost to the creation of an archive/museum housing all that has been preserved of Gianfranco Ferré's activity: more than 150,000 documents and artifacts, completely inventoried, including 22,000 sketches and technical drawings and 40,000 photos; 3,000 garments and accessories; objects belonging to the designer's collections; more than 1,600 bound volumes of fashion magazines from 1970 to 2007 and, finally, films, press reviews, writings, lectures and notes written by the designer himself.
At present, the Gianfranco Ferré Research Center combines the technical-scientific know-how and design culture characterizing the identity of Politecnico di Milano with the material and immaterial heritage relating to the history, culture and techniques of fashion preserved and valorized by the former Gianfranco Ferré Foundation.
Under the coordination of the Fashion in Process Research Laboratory of the Design Department of the Politecnico di Milano, the Research Centre aims to investigate, develop and experiment - in the field of digital innovation - advanced techniques for the visualisation, representation and fruition of material artefacts with a high cultural content, which are typical of the creative and cultural industries and represent a distinctive identity element of Italian culture and its recognition and positioning in the international sphere.