Following the successful collaboration between the Peggy Guggenheim Collection and the Opificio delle Pietre Dure of Florence on the conservation of Jackson Pollock’s iconic work Alchemy, the museum has launched a research partnership with the Opificio’s Scuola di Alta Formazione e di Studio during the 2014-2015 academic year. The initiative coordinated two MA theses focusing on the conservation of two works within the collection: Leslie Thornton’s Roundabout, and Bice Lazzari’s Measures and Signs. Curvatures (Misure e segni. Curvature).
Measures and Signs. Curvatures (Misure e segni. Curvature), 1967
Tempera and graphite on canvas, 75 x 75 cm
Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation, Venice
Gift, Archivio Lazzari, Rome, 2012.2
Measures and Signs. Curvatures (Misure e segni. Curvature) by Bice Lazzari.
Preliminary investigation, conservation project and restoration.
Thesis by Arianna Ingrassia
Scuola di Alta Formazione e di Studio dell’Opificio delle Pietre Dure, Florence
Supervisors: M. Ciatti, G. Lanterna, O. Sartiani, M. Patti, L. Pensabene Buemi
Arianna Ingrassia graduated high school from the Liceo L.B. Alberti in Florence as part of the Michelangelo project, with a formative pathway focused on artistic enquiry and cataloging of cultural heritage. In 2015 she obtained an MA degree in Conservation and Restoration of Cultural Heritage (LMR/02) from the Scuola di Alta Formazione e di Studio of the Opificio delle Pietre Dure, specializing in paintings on wood and textile supports, colored wooden sculptures, artifacts in painted, assembled or reworked synthetic materials.
This project focused on the restoration of painter Bice Lazzari’s work Measures and Signs. Curvatures. When it entered the Peggy Guggenheim Collection in 2012, the piece already presented certain conservation challenges due to its textile support and to its pictorial surface. Ingrassia’s thesis includes an in-depth study of Lazzari’s life and of the work itself (exhibition history, analysis of techniques, conservation status and effects of previous restoration campaigns). It also documents the conservation project, the experimentation on the work’s constitutive materials, and its final restoration. The conclusion sums up the research and provides indications on how to approach similar conservation projects in the future.
Bronze, 70,8 cm high
Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice 76.2553 PG 199
Leslie Thornton, Roundabout, 1955, Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice: conservation issues and restoration of a mild steal welded sculpture treated with differentiated layers.
Thesis by Arianna Vecchierelli
Scuola di Alta Formazione e di Studio dell’Opificio delle Pietre Dure, Firenze
Supervisors: S. Agnoletti, L. Pensabene Buemi, M. D. Mazzoni, M. Galeotti, M. Patti.
After attending art high school (liceo artistico), Arianna Rachele Vecchierelli trained in sculpture at the Accademia di Belle Arti di Brera in Milan, where she acquired in-depth knowledge of the history and techniques of this medium. In 2015 she obtained an MA degree in Conservation and Restoration of Cultural Heritage at the Scuola di Alta Formazione e di Studio of the Opificio delle Pietre Dure. Having learned the practical and scientific skills required for the restoration of ceramic metal, glass, and organic materials, Vecchierelli specialized in contemporary sculpture.
As part of a research project on metallic artifacts, the conservation department of the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, in collaboration with the Bronze and Antique Arms division of the Opificio delle Pietre Dure, launched a dissertation project on the restoration of Roundabout, a mild steel welded sculpture by Leslie Thornton. The thesis features historical and technical research focused on materials and gathers all information related to the work’s conservation, presenting pioneering conservation strategies for contemporary sculpture.