HangarBicocca opened in 2004 following the conversion of the huge Ansaldo-Breda industrial plant into a space for the production, showing and promotion of contemporary art, with a special receptiveness towards a diverse range of visual and performance art disciplines. All the exhibitions and events presented at HangarBicocca are distinguished by their research and experimental nature, with particular attention being given to site-specific projects capable of relating to the unique features of the exhibition space.
The wish to make HangarBicocca a cultural institution recognised by the Italian and international public and art world led in 2008 to the setting up of the Fondazione HangarBicocca, whose founding members are Pirelli & C., Regione Lombardia and the Camera di Commercio di Milano.
The involvement of local institutions is part of a process of development of the HangarBicocca space that is increasingly oriented towards models of cultural and economic sustainability which imply, naturally, a concrete openness to the external world.
The process of refurbishment undertaken in 2012 is a part of this vision. While preserving the industrial architecture of HangarBicocca, it has made new spaces available to the public, along with additional services such as, for example, the setting up of teaching workshops and creative games for children and young people, in an attempt to attract a younger public to contemporary art through fun activities; a poly-functional area open mainly for the consultation of art reviews, books and catalogues, which also acts as a projection room for the creation of art film shows in collaboration MIC (Museo Interattivo del Cinema), the new seat of Fondazione Cineteca Italiana.