The third edition of the European Games, the continent’s largest multisport event, will be held in Krakow, Poland.
From June 21 to July 2, the Italian delegation will compete in 25 of the 28 disciplines featured, led by Odette Giuffrida and Mauro Nespoli, Italian flag bearers at the Opening Ceremony scheduled at the Henryk Reyman Municipal Stadium.
The Italian delegation is made up of 331 athletes (165 women and 166 men), who will compete in 25 of the 28 disciplines on the program, with a focus on the 11 disciplines on the program that will qualify European athletes for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games, and the other 9 that will put Olympic ranking points up for grabs.
Also in Krakow, CONI has chosen to build Casa Italia, a reference point for the Italy Team and the Olympic Mission. A point of hospitality for stakeholders, but also and above all of content creation and media amplification of Italian excellence, in sport, art, desgin.
Therefore, in the same way as the Casa Italia Olimpica, Casa Italia Krakow 2023 enhances sport as a means through which the community, and especially the European Community, is built.
“The game is a free action, situated outside the usual life that nonetheless can totally take possession of the player; an action to which in itself no material interest is conjoined, from which no advantage is derived, and which arouses social relations.”
John Huizinga, historian, Homo ludens, 1938
This is the starting point of the Casa Italia project, a concept that can engage guests in a play experience that can act as a counterpoint to the sports competitions taking place outside, and at the same time lead us to reflect on the importance that The European Games have in building a sense of community.
The art intervention that drives the concept for Casa Italia is titled Building Blocks Europe, technically the wooden or plastic constructions that children use, and refers to the game of building something together using different pieces from each other. The three artists chosen to represent this project are among the most ironic and irreverent on the Italian scene, always using seemingly childish design and play as a metaphor for the need to preserve a youthful and utopian spirit in every aspect of human life.
In the central courtyard we are greeted by a work by Marco Bernardi, where the countries participating in the Games are wooden silhouettes that can be touched, broken down and reassembled, forming the European continent. Colored pencils are next to the sculpture, giving visitors the chance to leave a trace of their passage at Casa Italia.
On the terrace, where athletes will leave their signatures, Nelson Mandela’s words Sometimes the winner is simply a dreamer who never gave up underscore the importance of imagination and commitment involved in achieving a goal.
In the Lounge, two ironic and inclusive drawings by Marco Raparelli introduce the viewer to a domestic ambience typical of the atmosphere that animates the rooms of Casa Italia, complement Marco Bernardi’s Italy-themed sculptures in the niches.
In the main Ballroom, which will also function as a celebration, the protagonist is sport. Artist Gabriele Picco has drawn some Italian athletes intent on practicing sports with his usual ironic tone.
The support of Casa Italia Partners is also fundamental: Edra, already supporting Casa Italia Olimpica since 2016, is the protagonist of the lounge area with its iconic Boa and the two Grinza armchairs. Ethimo, on the other hand, took care of the outdoor set-up of the garden area and terrace, providing its elegant outdoor furniture.
The Italian competitions, thanks to the agreement between CONI and EBU, will be broadcast on Italia Team TV (tv.italiateam.sport) so that the Italian public can also enjoy the exploits of our athletes, in such an important step of the Road to Paris 2024.
ALL PHOTOS: SIMONE FERRARO, CONI