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SUB-FONDS Identifier: BER -3

Committee to Rescue Italian Art, Papers: Villa I Tatti.

Papers from the Villa I Tatti office of the American Committee to Rescue Italian Art (CRIA), founded to restore cultural heritage damaged by the 1966 Florentine flood, include correspondence, reports, and photographs related to the organization's activities.

Dates

  • 1966-1973

Conditions Governing Access

Unrestricted.

Conditions on use

Copying: Papers may be copied in accordance with the Biblioteca Berenson's usual procedures. Copyright: The Biblioteca Berenson does not hold copyright on all the materials in the collections. Requests for permission to publish material from the collection should be directed to the Archivist. Researchers who obtain permission to publish from the Archivist are responsible for identifying and contacting the persons or organizations that hold copyright.

Extent

8.0 linear feet (146 folders)

History

The Committee to Rescue Italian Art (CRIA) was an American committee created in the wake of the 1966 flood of the Arno River and high tides in Venice. CRIA worked in partnership with Italian institutions to rescue and restore all types of cultural heritage that had been damaged. Leadership included Jacqueline Kennedy, the Honorary President of the organization, and Professor Millard Meiss of the Institute of Advanced Study at Princeton, whom chaired the Executive Committee. CRIA’s members included art and architecture historians such as Bates Lowry, Fred Licht, Frederick Hartt, Sidney J. Freedberg, James Ackerman and Rudolf Wittkower, as well as historians and linguists such as Paul Oscar Kristeller, Felix Gilbert and I Tatti's own director, Myron P. Gilmore. All were intellectuals with close ties to Florence and to Italy who had long studied its culture through original sources and documents.There were three general headquarters of CRIA in its six years of activity: an office in New York at 717 5th Street, where Bates Lowry supervised work and spent the bulk of his time fundraising (from both large donors and smaller appeals in universities and schools) and two offices in Florence at Palazzo Pitti and Villa I Tatti. The Committee successfully campaigned to raise its target goal of 2.5 million dollars. These funds were then used to restore countless works of art, including monuments, paintings, manuscripts and library materials as selected by the CRIA Advisory Committee.

While the I Tatti records are organized in a similar fashion as that of the Palazzo Pitti offices – divisions reflecting the main categories of the Italian system of Soprintendenze – the subject matter is less financial and more scholarly in nature. Files include restoration reports and a large group of photographs, the latter of which were formerly housed in the Berenson Fototeca.

Arrangement

The subfond includes seven series: Correspondence, Financial, Personnel, Soprintendenza alle Gallerie, Archives and Libraries, Monuments and Museums, and Photographs.

Other Finding Aids

Item-level finding aid available. Contact Archivist.

Custodial History

This subfond, named Committee to Rescue Italian Art, Papers: Villa I Tatti, comes from the institutional archive of I Tatti. When CRIA was active Villa I Tatti was one of the Committee's two headquarters in Florence (the other was in Palazzo Pitti). At I Tatti, CRIA was overseen by I Tatti's director, Myron Gilmore, and art historian Millard Meiss. While the I Tatti records are organized in a similar fashion as those from the Palazzo Pitti office – divisions reflect the main categories of the Italian system of Soprintendenze – the subject matter of the I Tatti papers is less financial and more scholarly in nature. Files include restoration reports and a large group of photographs, the latter of which were formerly housed in the Berenson Fototeca.

Related Materials

There are additional CRIA papers organized in the subfond relative to the Palazzo Pitti Office held by Biblioteca Berenson, Villa I Tatti - The Harvard University Center for Italian Renaissance Studies. Finding aid available here.
Title
Committee to Rescue Italian Art Papers, 1966-1973
Subtitle
Villa I Tatti Office
Author
Biblioteca Berenson
EAD ID
ber00003

Repository Details

Part of the Biblioteca Berenson, Villa I Tatti - The Harvard University Center for Italian Renaissance Studies Repository

Contact:
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