Latest press release

Moritz Mantero, President of Orticolario


The seven finalists of the international competition have been selected; they will exhibit their gardens and installations in the historic park of Villa Erba on Lake Como, on the occasion of the thirteenth edition of Orticolario from September 28 to October 1, 2023 

Water is life’s matter and matrix, mother and medium.
Albert Szent-Gyorgyi 

Cernobbio (CO), March 16, 2023 – The ancestral relationship between man and water is an ancient and intimate, regenerative and destructive, emotional, dynamic and magic relationship. The “Water Landscape”, the theme of Orticolario 2023, aroused the interest of the participants in the “Creative Spaces” International Competition for the design and creation of gardens and artistic installations. The seven finalists, evaluated by “La Compagnia dei Pensatori” of Orticolario, among the proposals sent by architects, designers, landscapers, artists, gardeners and nurserymen, accepted Orticolario’s invitation to translate the relationship with water into landscape. 

The selected participants will carry out their projects in the historic park of Villa Erba, in Cernobbio, during Orticolario, scheduled from Thursday, September 28 to Sunday, October 1, 2023: as always, original and innovative spaces, liveable and usable gardens, new ideas for gardens and artistic installations will define a different experience of the relationship between man and nature. 

“We were very impressed by the level and quality of the projects presented – comments Vaprio Zanoni of Green Design, a gardener with a passion for design in “La Compagnia dei Pensatori” of Orticolario. In particular, we were struck by the different interpretations of the Water Landscape, some very distant from each other. In fact, we pass from gardens populated by aquatic plants to landscapes totally devoid of water, where imagining its lack is not necessarily a negative aspect”. 


1. Space Michieli Floricoltura “Swamp Synthesis”
Designed and made by Roberta Studio with Concept CB. Milan | 

2. Space Fratelli Leonelli “Riflessi nell’acqua” (Reflections in the water)
Designed and made by Paolo Leonelli and Stefania Pluchino . Castelletto Sopra Ticino (NO) 

3. Space “Come il cervo anela all’acqua” (As the deer longs for water)
Designed and made by Claudio Marelli. Como 

4. Space Galleria Senesi Arte “L’universo sei tu” (You are the universe)
Designed and made by Gabriele Mundula. Sirtori (LC)
IG: @progettojenov4 

5. Space Sab Green “Tornare alla sorgente” (Back to the source)
Designed and made by Gaia Gennati with Davide Sala, Simone Bellegante, Fabio Auronzi. Cantù (CO)
IG: @gaia.gennati 

6. Space Flora Conservation “Il battito della vita” (The Beat of Life)
Designed and made by Annalisa Ferraris e Lino Zubani. Pavia | 

7. Space “L’acqua che non c’è: il giardino sostenibile” (The water that is not there: the sustainable garden)
Designed and made by Katarzyna Pieniawska and Miledù. Como 


The creations will be evaluated by an international jury that will assign the sculpture award “The golden Leaf of Lake Como” to the best work. The prize is a sinuous-formed vase on which a large leaf flutters with “hints” of pure gold (24K), designed and made exclusively by Gino Seguso of the historic Vetreria Artistica Archimede Seguso di Murano (VE). The prize is unique and will be kept by the winner for a limited period, after which it will remain on display at Villa Carlotta in Tremezzo on Lake Como until the next edition of Orticolario: the re-awarding ceremony for the 2022 award, assigned to the landscape architect Arianna Tomatis with the space entitled “Alla ricerca di sé stessi”, will be held in line with tradition at Villa Carlotta, this year on Thursday, April 13, at 11.00 a.m. The names of the winners will be included in the Roll of honour displayed next to the prize. 

In addition to the “La Foglia d’oro del Lago di Como” Award, the jury will also assign other awards: the “Art Award” for a space in which the balance between art and nature coexists, where different languages find effective synthesis; the “Journalists” Award for material innovation and eco-sustainability; the “Great Italian Gardens Award” for a space that knows how to interpret the opening of a garden to the public also through accessible seats and places for reflection, with botanical collections and spectacular blooms; the “Villa d’Este Award”, where style and elegance combine in a timeless tradition; the “Villa Carlotta Award” to promote art in the garden, where nature and human ingenuity may harmoniously coexist; the “AIAPP Matilde Marazzi Award” for an innovative space consistent with the themes of simplicity, beauty and sustainability, which are fundamental qualities in landscape design; the “Gardenia Award” l to the nursery, exhibitor or installation regarded as “memorable” in Orticolario’s edition; in addition to the “President Award” and the “Visitators’ choice Award” for the Creative Space most voted by the public. 

May we remember that the purpose of Orticolario is to promote the culture of the landscape and to raise funds for local associations involved in social issues and which contributed to the realization of the event. 


Orticolario, now in its thirteenth edition, is the cultural event dedicated to those for whom nature is a lifestyle. Scene of the exhibition will be the historic park of Villa Erba in Cernobbio (CO), a nineteenth-century manor house overlooking the shores of Lake Como, childhood summer residence of director Luchino Visconti. A distinctive feature is the proposal of thematic gardens and art installations inspired by the theme of the year, among which the creations of the artists selected in the international competition “Creative Spaces” stand out. The exhibition is enriched by a wide range of rare, unusual and collectible plants, artistic craftsmanship and design with about 270 carefully selected exhibitors, an intensive calendar of meetings and numerous educational and creative workshops for children, as well as performances and experiences. At the centre of the exhibition there is art, which is able to go beyond and break down the borders between inside and outside. During the four-day event and for the rest of the year, contributions are collected for the Amici di Orticolario Fund, which supports projects for the promotion of landscape culture and for five local charities. The next edition will take place from Thursday, September 28 to Sunday, October 1, 2023. 


September 28 – October 1, 2023 Villa Erba, Cernobbio (CO), on Lake Como
Visitor info: tel. +39 031 3347503, mail:
YouTube: Orticolario


Daniela Stasi . Mob. +39.333.607716
Alessandra Perrucchini . Mob. +39.340.4212323
Noemi Cervi . Mob. +39.346.8433966