Simple and Complex

Semplice e Complesso

An exhibition of great relevance that approaches an original theme both studied in scientific research and cross-cutting to many experiences of our daily lives: complexity.

  • Complex systems are not as abstract as commonly believed. Complexity permeates our everyday world: from a pile of oranges in the market to the movement of traffic in the city, from the geometry of the forms of nature to the material itself which - despite being composed only from electrons, protons and neutrons - draws its variety of aspects and behaviours from their different combinations; to motion, in which the relationships between positions and instants can be so rich as to make it unpredictable and chaotic. Man creates simple objects and seeks simplicity everywhere but looking around he discovers complexity.

After trying for centuries to break the world into simple parts, scientists are now convinced that understanding ‘the parts’ is very different from understanding ‘the whole’. A complex system is not a banal juxtaposition of simple parts, but it is structured by their reciprocal connections which originate new, collective properties, different from those of the constituents. In order to understand collective properties, it is necessary to study those connections. It can be laborious or, in technical terms, require more or less information and it is the amount of information that allows us to measure the complexity.

The exhibition, divided into three thematic sections 'Geometry', 'Matter' and "Motion", is a collection of windows opening onto a vast world, a collection of ideas and proposals to look at familiar landscapes with new eyes.



  • 18 September - 17 October 2021: XXV Editionof the exhibition in Settimo Torinese, at the Ecomuseo del Freidano, Mulino Nuovo Complex, Via Ariosto 36 / Bis. From 9 to 16 October the exhibition is part of the 2021 Innovation and Science Festival
  • 16 March - 16 April 2019: Padua as part of the 'Sperimentando' event at the 'ex Macello' Cathedral
  • 8-11 November 2018: Naples, City of Science, as part of the XXXII edition of Futuro Remoto
  • 15 December 2016 - 28 May 2017: Bari, Mediterranean Citadel of Science
  • 24 July - 6 September 2015: Civitanova Marche, San Francesco Multimedia Space, as part of Futura Festival 2015
  • 9 April - 3 May 2015: Foligno, Palazzo Brunetti Candiotti, as part of the 5th Science and Philosophy Festival 'Virtute e Canoscenza'
  • 17 November – 15 December 2013: Salerno, Fornace del Parco Urbano ex Salid
  • 25 October - 4 November 2012: Genoa, Palazzo Ducale, as part of the Science Festival
  • 27 September - 27 October 2011: L'Aquila, Red Zone, Control Centre, as part of the XCVII National Congress of the Italian Physical Society
  • 2 October 2010 -30 May 2011: Brescia, AmbienteParco
  • 4 - 13 December 2009: Palermo, Loggiato di San Bartolomeo
  • 23 January – 1 February 2009: Sestri Levante, Mediaterraneo Foundation, as part of 'Fantast!che - the Science Festival in the Lands of Portofino'
  • 23 October - 4 November 2008: Sanremo, Villa Ormond, as part of the Science Festival in Liguria
  • 16 - 23 May 2008: Shanghai, Shanghai Pudong Exhibition Centre, as part of the Shanghai Science Festival - Shanghai International Science & Art Exhibition (on the occasion “Simple and Complex” gained the 'best exhibition award' by the Shanghai Association for Science and Technology
  • 27 September - 21 October 2007: Bergamo, Palazzo della Provincia, within Bergamoscienza
  • 6-22 September 2007: Perugia, Rocca Paolina as part of the Perugia Science Festival
  • 13 March - 7 May 2006: Turin, Museo dell’automobile
  • 27 October - 7 November 2005: Genoa, Palazzo Ducale, as part of the Science Festival
  • 3 - 14 October 2005: Pavia, Cairoli and Santa Caterina da Siena University Colleges
  • 10-22 May 2004: Residence of the President of the Italian Republic in Castelporziano (Rome) as part of the 'Youth Project - Two weeks for science' promoted by the General Secretariat of the Presidency of the Republic in collaboration with the Education Department of the Italian Ministry of Education
  • 20 March - 4 April 2004: Cosenza, Rectorate of the University of Calabria, Salone di rappresentanza
  • 23 October -3 November 2003: Genoa, Palazzo Ducale, as part of the Science Festival
  • 29 April - 1 June 2003: Venice, Telecom Italia Future Centre
  • 23 February - March 14, 2002: Genoa, Palazzo Ducale
  • 27 October 2001- 6 January 2002: Milan, Museum of Science and Technology 'L. da Vinci'

Last update: 03/07/2023