Fondazione Fiera Milano Historical Archive preserves the history of Milan’s fairgrounds and its fair through the documentation produced by the Fair Board ever since 1920, the year the first Milan Fair was held.
Its posters, photographs, newspapers, books, footage, and various documentary collections tell the many and various stories of all the exhibitor companies, visitors, sponsors, and workers at the fair.
All lined up, the documents surpass a kilometre in length. The major historical importance of the Archive has been formally recognized by the Soprintendenza of the Lombardy Region, as notified on February 1st, 2005.
Fondazione Fiera Milano is running a fully self-funded campaign to digitize and catalogue the documentary and photographic collections held by the Historical Archive. To date, more than twenty five thousand catalogue files can be accessed, for a total of forty thousand digital objects.
The Fondazione Fiera Milano Historical Archive is also the driving engine for the project PROSPETTIVA Archivi, promoted together with Afip International and La Triennale di Milano. The aim of the project is to preserve the archives of major Italian photographers and unlock access for the greater public to thousands of pictures, all digitized and catalogued according to international standards.
The Historical Archives of Fondazione Fiera Milano are also a partner in various initiatives:
- Museimpresa—Italian Corporate Archives and Museums Association, which since 2001 has promoted and brought together companies that have chosen to leverage culture as value added to their companies.
- Corporate Archives Portal, a specific area in the National Archival System (SAN), conceived and promoted by the Directorate-General for Archives (DGA) with a view to preserving the historical archives of public and private enterprises in Italy.
- Rete Fotografia, an association offering space for engagement and learning for people in the photography sector.
- ANAI—Italian National Archives Association, which promotes studies and initiatives to further the cultural role of archivists, to expand relations between archive experts and enthusiasts, and to preserve our archival heritage and unlock its value. In addition, Fondazione Fiera Milano has been a member of GIAI — Italian Corporate Archivists’ Group since 2014.