CFP: Quo vadis provenance research? Primary Sources and Archival Collections in post-unitarian Italy (2nd Workshop Provenance Research in Italy, Bibliotheca Hertziana Rome, 26-27 Sep 2024)

On September 26th–27th 2024, the Photographic Collection of the Bibliotheca Hertziana – Max-Planck-Institute for Art History, Rome, will host the second annual meeting of the working group for provenance research of cultural goods in Italy (“AG Italien”). The workshop will focus on primary sources and archival collections in post-unitarian Italy, which serve as a fundamental tool for provenance research.

Today, research projects dealing with the Italian post-unitary period up to the recent years still face the significant challenge of not only having to locate archival sources, but also finding a way to access and consult them. Research projects on the history of collecting and the art market are particularly affected by this issue, but the situation is equally problematic when it comes to investigating artists’ biographies and their networks or the reconstruction of object provenances that have an explicit connection to Italy.

The two-day workshop aims to put this issue up for discussion and wishes to promote an open dialogue between international scholars and representatives of research institutions. The focus lies not only on traditional art historical sources such as subject-specific libraries, photo libraries, private estates or institutional archives. It is also intended to include historical and political archives. The objective is to connect various sources and methods of archival work which relate to the field of provenance research and to identify potential improvements in the provision and the use of archival material (including digital data) in and outside Italy.

We welcome submissions from early career and senior researchers who wish to share their latest case studies in a constructive and synergetic environment. Papers can address topics from (photographic) libraries and archives to art galleries, auction houses, private collections and museums. Workshop languages are English and Italian. Please submit your proposal (max. 300 words, in English or Italian) and a short biography (max. 100 words) by 4th February 2024 via the recruitment platform Notification regarding the acceptance of the proposals will be made by the end of February 2024. Please note that financial support for the workshop has not been fully secured yet, hence it might be possible that participants will need to cover travel and accommodation expenses for themselves.

Organized by the “AG Italien” in cooperation with the Photographic Collection of the Bibliotheca Hertziana
Concept and organization: Katharina Hüls-Valenti and Johannes Röll

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