DAMSLab | La Soffitta


DAMSLab is a laboratory aimed at promoting culture at a urban level. Designed and managed by the Department of Arts of the University of Bologna, DAMSLab’s goal is to enhance projects and foster synergies that find in cultural and artistic production and participation the key factor for territorial growth, and a focal point for contemporary and future citizenship. It is open to the territory and brings different areas of knowledge into dialogue. DAMSLab activates and facilitates synergies and collaborations with other Departments and with the city, its cultural institutions, foundations, businesses, museums and associations, favoring social outcomes in terms of awareness-raising, participation and cultural mobilization of the urban fabric.

DAMSLab adopts a collaborative and participatory method, based on networking and co-planning in order to develop original ideas and projects that enhance the whole variety of languages and cultural and artistic forms of production. Both the direct connection with the teaching, research and planning activities of the Department of Arts and an inter-disciplinary character are important pillars of DAMSLab. The main objective is the constant dialogue with the University, the city, public institutions, other actors in the district of the Manifattura delle Arti, the artistic field, cultural and creative industries and with various bodies and associations of civil society.

The activities of DAMSLab aim to facilitate the circulation of cultural and social capital and the development of an idea of active, creative, reflective cultural citizenship, based on discussion and on the construction of a shared sense of belonging to a culturally dynamic, open and cohesive community.

La Soffitta

The centre takes its name from the historic theatrical space located in via D'Azeglio where it was installed in 1989, one year after its foundation, on the initiative of then Rettore Fabio Roversi Monaco. After various logistical issues, in 2002, the centre found a new home in the DAMSLab of the Manifattura delle Arti, in piazzetta P.P. Pasolini 5/b.

La Soffitta has given birth to original design methods, integrating its proposals with the research activity and workshops by DAMS and the master's degrees of the Department of the Arts. For years now it has been considered as a place not only of hospitality, but of elaboration and experimentation for expressive practices and forms of contemporary artistic research. The result is a rich program of activities, divided into projects: paths that cross themes, genres and experiences, combining the moments of entertainment with theoretical in-depth analysis and opportunities for a concrete practical approach.

The programs by La Soffitta are divided into six sections: Theater, Music, Dance, Cinema, Visual Arts and History and Society. It hosts initiatives designed for students, but open to the city and the region. La Soffitta has already promoted young artists, marginal and emerging realities, and hosted national and international personalities, always trying to combine a strong sensitivity towards what is new with an enhancement of and a focus on memory and historical heritage.