Villa Litta Lainate


Permanent exhibition of some noble outfits made by the Institute of Fashion and Costume "W. Kandinsky "in Milan as part of the project "Young artists for antique clothes", selected by the Fondazione Comunitaria Nord Milano for the competition "Culture and Social Cohesion 2012".

Available for visits during the times of guided tours to the Nymphaeum. 

The permanent exhibition in the halls of the Villa, inaugurated in December 2012, collects materials and objects that have shaped the history of letterpress printing for centuries. A space dedicated especially to the younger generation, immersed in new technologies, which runs through a process that began with the use of mobile character invented by Johannes Gutenberg.
First it’s a historical-educational laboratory that shows the development of communication and popular knowledge through the history of letterpress printing. In the rooms you can see a functioning 1840 English-made printing-press, semi-automatic pedal-machines and many objects needed for the profession, but also many types of characters made of lead, wood and plastic. The information panels narrate the most important phases of this job once regarded as art. A space is dedicated to photography, in particular those related to the press, and you can see many ancient machines and tools for photoreproduction.

The exhibition can be visited during the normal visit days scheduled for Villa Litta or through a specific request to the Association Amici di Villa Litta - - +39 029374282

"Lindenia Iconographie des Orchidées"
by L. Linden (Gent 1855 - Brussels 1903)
Based on the studies of his father, Jean Jules Linden (Luxembourg 1817 - Brussels 1898)

In the hall of the museum of Villa Litta are kept in special showcases 17 rare volumes of this publication to symbolize the event of flowering - for the first time in Europe – of an orchid in the garden of the Litta family. The Toselli family called this delicate flower a "wonderful symbol of the most beautiful poetry of Nature."
This collection was donated to the City of Lainate by Mrs. Isora Toselli in 1987, the last owner of the Toselli Estate, a floriculture well known in the 50's / 60's for growing orchids. The piece was bought in Belgium during the stay of the family in Brussels. After returning to their homeland in 1930, the Toselli family bought Villa Litta where the Liberty greenhouses, that are currently being restored, were functioning and they began the cultivation of orchids thus continuing a process started by the Littas.
The 17 volumes collect pamphlets printed in Belgium between 1891 and 1902. Front plate and top are made of half linen paper, 350x260mm., with 798 chromolithographic plates and 1 flat plate.
This fine collection of "Lindenia" is attributed to Lucien, and is one of the rarest iconographies published on Orchids, illustrated with 420 pictures of different species reproduced with chromolithographic prints, accompanied by cards and text written in french.
This collection is linked to an exhibition of these volumes (2005), and a printed edition "The Orchids of Villa Litta" that contains 8 colored lithographies.

Jean J. Linden was perhaps the greatest of all commercial orchid growers of the late 19th century and, him and his son Lucien (1853-1940), were responsible for the importation of more than 1,100 different species in Europe . Explorer, horticulturist and businessman, Jean J. Linden was born in Luxembourg in 1817and was one of the first students to attend the new Faculty of Science, in  the University of Brussels and at the young age of 19 he has been entrusted a scientific mission in South America by the Belgian Government. This was the beginning of what was to be a long period that lasted ten years; Then he traveled throughout South and Central America in search of new species of orchids. Back in Europe in October 1845, he has established himself as nurseryman in Gent, before moving to Brussels, where he founded the settlement known as Horticulture Internationale in collaboration with his son Lucien. Thanks to him many travels he could carry out a detailed study of the conditions of growth of orchids in their natural habitat and his discoveries have revolutionized the rules followed until then in Europe for growing orchids (basically, before his research, the plants were kept at much higher temperatures than they needed, resulting in a high mortality rate. On the contrary, to have optimal conditions for their growth, the plants need temperatures ranging from cold to hot, only that way orchids thrive).
Thanks to this success, field-proven in the botanical zoo of Brussels, Linden has created an empire, first by participating in numerous exhibitions in Belgium and in France, and then winning awards in exhibitions in London, Paris and St. Petersburg.