Photo Credit: Alessandra Capodacqua
La Pietra is a Renaissance Villa, a Museum with over forty furnished rooms and a collection of masterpieces, from the Roman Age to the 1920s. But La Pietra is, above all, a home. Today it is the home of NYU Florence, where people meet, study, work and enjoy the beauty of the estate surrounded by its natural landscape; in the past it was the home of important Florentine families, like the Sassetti and the Capponi, and more recently the home of an Anglo-American family: Arthur Acton, Hortense Mitchell, and their children Harold and William. A perfect dialogue between past and present is difficult, but tangible here in the Villa and in the Garden where we strive to balance every day between conservation and creativity.
We study and work to preserve the collections and the collecting taste of the family but at the same time we welcome students, scholars, artists and authors to take inspiration from the Villa: a blend of history, artworks, taste, characters and stories set in a specific geographical and anthropological environment. Curators and conservators from Italy and the U.S. cooperate with the Italian Ministry of Cultural Heritage to maintain the historic interiors and collections, and keep the authenticity of the ambience; meanwhile our students interact with the museum every day with their classes or their individual interests. The Collection Office activities are based on the students’ direct participation: indeed their voices allow La Pietra to stay alive, to be a vibrant meeting place of cultures and ideas. Do not miss the opportunity to knock at the door and be part of the team.
Due to limited research space and staff time, appointments are required to access collection resources. Requests should be made well in advance, detailing material needed and reason for an on-site visit. Individuals wishing to conduct academic research on materials available within the collection should schedule an appointment with the Collection Manager Francesca Baldry.
Museum Studies graduate students enrolled in the M.A. program at NYU pursue internships at Villa La Pietra for credit in fulfilment of their program’s degree requirements. For the past several years, interns have participated in many ways: giving tours of the art collection, organizing concerts and other cultural events, and cataloguing the art collection.