UFFIZI GALLERY ANNOUNCES NEW PRINTS AND DRAWINGS STUDY ROOM WITH THANKS TO FRIENDS OF FLORENCE FOUNDATION
In mid-February 2016, new Uffizi Gallery director Eike Schmidt unveiled a new Study Center in the museum’s legendary Prints and Drawings Department. With some 177,000 works, including drawings by Michelangelo and Leonardo, the Uffizi’s graphics collection is one of the largest in the world. The new study room, library and photo library will offer state-of-the-art technology, more space, and increased capacity to respond to the research needs of Italian and international scholars and students. The U.S.-based Friends of Florence Foundation contributed more than $400,000, through a grant from the Peter Cundill Study Center Foundation, about a third of the total cost of just over €1 million. “Starting from the book of Vasari drawings and beyond…the collections of drawings and prints have been the crucible of art history as a discipline and as a method,” Schmidt said. “They have always favored the education of the eye and stimulated scientific discussion and research, which will be further enhanced with the new study room.” “This project is the first time that our foundation has participated in an architectural intervention of this magnitude, helping to create a beautiful and functional architectural space,” said Simonetta Brandolini d’Adda, founder and president of Friends of Florence. “The Prints and Drawings Department now is equipped to welcome researchers from around the world, and enable them to consult and review a collection of prints, drawings and photographs that is unique in the world.” The stunning oak-lined space was designed by architect Antonio Godoli, who said “The extensive use of wood that wraps all surfaces, the homogeneity of materials and colors, and the lights designed with precise directionality together define a suitable environment for concentration and contemplation.” Godoli, who is the Uffizi’s director of architecture, was assisted by Nicola Santini for interior architecture and Pier Paolo Taddei for furnishings. The Uffizi Gallery’s new Prints and Drawings Study Center will open in June 2016. Images are available here.