The IED Group lands in Bilbao thanks to the integration of Kunsthal, a Centre for Higher Education in Design. With this new addition, IED establishes its third site in Spain – it is already present in Madrid and Barcelona – and the 12th in the world (Italy, Spain and Brazil). IED thus consolidates its position as a driver of education, the talent of the new generations and business development. For its part, the integration is for Kunsthal a key step forward for the entity’s future and a boost to education in the Basque region.
The new site is based in the iconic Papelera Building, now managed by IED and located on the Zorrozaurre Island, as part of the urban regeneration project launched by the Bilbao City Council with the aim of turning this island into the region’s creative and cultural meeting point.
Kunsthal – IED Bilbao will enjoy the mature academic experience of the Kunsthal design school in the Basque region, allowing both institutions to strengthen the range of educational courses offered in the Basque Country as well as the quality of training and the creation of a business network around the new school, as well as the city’s cultural and social life. For the Mayor of Bilbao, Juan Mari Aburto, the inauguration of Kunsthal – IED Bilbao “is a further strategic piece that enriches our aim of turning Bilbao into a prestigious university city, with young, innovative, talented people who stay with us to study, work and live.
In addition, we are doing this in Zorrotzaurre, our Talent and Knowledge Island, where we are making progress towards it becoming our city’s area for expansion with new industries linked to advanced services, creative industries, training, art etc.”. “Our wish is for Kunsthal IED Bilbao to become the nursery of many great professionals who will leave their brilliant mark all over the world, a mark forged in our City”, he adds.
Alessandro Manetti, CEO of IED Spain, remarks: “IED has found in Kunsthal the perfect partner for the group’s development in Spain. The shared values, both entities’ firm belief in design as an agent of change and education as a fundamental pillar of society make us firmly believe that Kunsthal - IED Bilbao will be an important agent in the city of Bilbao and in the region”. The integration of Kunsthal into the IED Group also entails IED moving closer to neighbouring countries thanks to the location and the relationships that have already been established in France. A commitment to opening up to the internationalisation of its students by attracting foreign talent, a hallmark of the group.
The catalyst for the link between design, technology and the human factor The distinctive feature of KUNSTHAL - IED Bilbao within the group will be experimentation in new languages, methodologies and territories for applying education and design in all its specialities. The centre will be identified as the catalyst for connections between design, technology and the human factor with a focus on the industrial and business sector of the Basque region.
In relation to this, the director of Kunsthal, Gaizka Zuazo, says that “moving forward together with IED enables us to become stronger and generate areas of opportunity. Not only as a result of the international exposure, but also as a result of the group’s support for experimentation in the new teaching languages that we use in Kunsthal and the strength that allows us greater guarantees in addressing the new qualifications in Fashion Design and Product Design that we will start to teach in the coming academic year and in our first postgraduate courses and master’s degree”.
The site was officially opened this morning by Juan Mari Aburto, mayor of Bilbao. The event was attended by the directors of Kunsthal - IED BILBAO; Massimo Rosi, CEO of the IED Group, Riccardo Balbo, president of the Francesco Morelli Foundation and Alessandro Manetti, CEO of IED Spain.