Laura, in a nutshell

If I had to sum up what I do in one sentence, I would say this: designing is the best way, that I know of, to organize things. I view communication design as a process of continuous research, based on the method as much as on creativity, to design content that serves people who use it.

Since 2013 I have been the creative director at Ida Studio, a communication design studio that bases its work on multidisciplinarity and contamination between different skills, constantly looking for new visual approaches.
Since 2018 I have been a lecturer at the University of Ferrara in the industrial product design faculty.

Design for visual communication

For me, visual design is a process aimed at giving meaning to information and making it understandable and accessible. My vision of the work of a designer is one of a mediator who, through an in-depth period of research, creates visual systems that are able to translate information into visual language.
I am involved in the design of visual identity systems, creative direction, graphic design and illustration – with a focus on communication for the arts and culture industry.
Identity systems are like ecosystems in which the logo is just one of the many elements involved in the construction of a new lexicon. I collaborate with artists, musicians, exhibition spaces, institutions and arts and culture events.
In my way of working, illustration is always at the service of an integrated communication project, in which words and images talk to each other continuously. In this context, the images stimulate reflection and take on a narrative function that is the meeting point between personal sensitivity and the communications needs of the individual project. Ida, the studio I manage, has won important national and European awards.

UHDC poster in Bologna, 2019; “Pubblico/Privato” poster, “Pre-visioni per Milano” exhibition, 2015; "Bento" poster for students' exhibition in Ferrara, 2018-2019.
Wayfinding system for Fondazione Querini Stampalia, Venezia; studio: Ida. Identity Atlas; graphic design: Laura Bortoloni, Anna Gasparini; year: 2018-2019.
ARA. Client: Tumbo Acsd; studio: Ida; graphic design: Daniele De Rosa; art direction: Laura Bortoloni; year: 2016 Gold/Brand logo European Design Award 2017

Graphic facilitation

I work as a graphic facilitator, both with analog and digital methods, for events, conferences, workshops and labs. Visualizing information is one of the most effective ways to imprint it more effectively into your memory. With visualization of thought flows, developing a project’s ideas will occur more clearly and effectively.
My work as a graphic recorder works with these aspects. Signs, keywords and illustrations become useful tools to synthesize a multitude of information to simplify understanding and facilitate memorization.


Training projects

I support professionals by being a teacher. I am contract professor of graphic design at the University of Ferrara in the Industrial Product Design degree course and in other private institutions.
I often teach at labs and workshops, in Italy and abroad.
The “Do you know me?” workshop, focused on how we present ourselves and also how to question traditional curriculum vitae and portfolio models, has been selected for ADI Design Index 2018.

Students' exhibition, Concept Design Workshop, 2019/2020. Professors: Laura Bortoloni, Sabina Betti, Ivano Vianello.

Transversal projects

My training and my interests have led me to intersect my daily work with intense shared research projects, giving rise to arts and culture initiatives in different areas. The goal is to form non-obvious links between experiences, to create communities around topics that may be very distant, with a transmedial vision of the projects.
The interactive documentary Non Résumé on non-linear career paths is an example.



I have been experimenting with letterpress for years, within the collective “Tipolesine” since 2008, collecting and printing wood type crafted in the early 20th century in Northern Italy. In 2020 I discovered mokuhanga (Japanese woodblock printing) and I trained with Mara Cozzolino. I am deeply interested in both the expressive possibility of wood and the idea of modularity, repetition, variations. I consider myself a newbie with this medium, and I am working to develop personal narrative and visual approach. In 2021 one of my projects has been showcased in the “2021 Juried Exhibition – Sumi Fusion International Mokuhanga Exhibition” in Nara, Japan.
Instagram: @testadifilo

laura bortoloni mokuhanga4
laura bortoloni mokuhanga
Quadrato, 2021

More info, complete resume, awards and publications here