image image image image image
Florestano Vancini : a memoir Hit by a thunderbolt that determined a career and style of life. “In my day, it made a difference whether you were born and raised inside or outside the walls. Ferrara seemed to be a fortified place compared to that limitless countryside, poor and hard-working, and my father was only the Boara postman….” Florestano Vancini, who died on 18 September 2008 last, was physically born inside the walls, on 24 August 1926 in the hospital. However he was raised in Boara, the first village on the road to Copparo, and not “inside” the walled city.
Boldini in Paris The relationship between Boldini and French Impressionism will be explored in this great exhibition. Boldini painted a fascinating picture called Cantante mondana [“Society singer”] in the mid-1880s. It shows a snapshot of the Paris of the late nineteen-hundreds - the life, the cafés and the music halls that the artist patronised along with his friends and fellow-painters like Degas - and as such lay outside the area for which he was renowned, namely portrait painting.
It's all in the blood Impromptu thoughts of a "Dolomite-Po Valley man" My mother was tall and slim, with a consciously understated beauty; on the contrary, my athletic father was well aware of his good looks, tanned by the Cortina sun. She was from a good Ferrara family, had a diploma from the music conservatory and was anything but sporty; he was a ski and ice-hockey champion and mountain climber, from a modest family who were photography pioneers in this remote corner of Italy.
Story of a insolvent bank Luigi Franceschini and the "Piccolo Credito" bank, as remembered by his son. This is a nice “vintage” photograph taken at the San Girolamo Piazza eighty years ago.  It is a  souvenir photo with a certain historical interest: the  three people on  the right were very important characters in the story of  the insolvency of a Ferrara  bank, the  “ Piccolo   Credito ” : my  father,  the lawyer   Luigi   Franceschini,  who  was  the  receiver  appointed  by   the  Court   of   Ferrara ;   to  his  right,
Mystery and blades of grass in Filippo De Pisis The re-emergence of the herbarium collected by the Ferrara painter as a young man. The artistic sensibility of many leading cultural figures was cultivated by collecting grasses, herbs and flowers stalks, to then smoothen them out and press them between sheets of blotting paper:Obviously the great naturalists were enthusiasts, but world-famous thinkers also shared this hobby (Rousseau,Goethe,von Chamisso and Hesse), as well as poets,

Valuable documents

Written by  Andrea Nascimbeni

The “Centennial calendar”, publiushed in 1938 to celebrate the centennial of the Cassa di Risparmio di Ferrara.The story of the Centennial Calendar, through a set of newly found documents.

Dusty wardrobes, yellowed paper, abandoned in a cellar or an attic. Neglected material, considered cumbersome, just about tolerated in the limited space available. Unfortunately, this is the idea that most people have of paper files. Therefore the “shout for help” by Saòlvatore Settis is revealing. Asked about the “current situation” on “cultural” funding, he responds “files are like Cinderella. And a country that ignores its files is a country that wants to commit suicide, especially a country like Italy that has some of the most important medieval files in the world”. The simile is strong: culture and its Some of the sophisticated illustrations which made Agostino Nanni famous in Italy, in the Thirties.funding are represented by a scullery maid in mourning, banished to the sooty underworld, left without means of support by her wicked stepmother and jealous step-sisters who plan to usurp her original status. Thankfully, surprises sometimes occur. Insights can often flash amid the haze of neglect so that the “chick peas and lentils hidden under the ashes” can be found just as Cinderella did by saying to the turtledoves “the good ones go into the pot, the bad ones go into your crop”. A story has emerged, which would never have been told if the documentation hadn’t been kept or hadn’t been “found”, as part of numerous adventures. The case unfolds with the centenary celebrations of the Cassa di Risparmio di Ferrara held in 1938. The bank decided to mark this anniversary by Some of the sophisticated illustrations which made Agostino Nanni famous in Italy, in the Thirties.Some of the sophisticated illustrations which made Agostino Nanni famous in Italy, in the Thirties.Some of the sophisticated illustrations which made Agostino Nanni famous in Italy, in the Thirties.restoring the Palazzina di Marfisa d’Este, including furnishing it with antique furniture bought from the antique market by Nino Barbantini. Two “mediums” were chosen to advertise the event, the calendar (used by all thebanks forming part of the Emilia Bank Federation) and a commemorative postcard of Ferrara, both with the single motif of the Palazzina. The organisational machine got to work over a year beforehand, sponsored by the Bologna Federation under the chairmanship of Enrico Masetti. The correspondence covers the period between 22 April 1937 and 19 May 1938 and comprises sixty drafts, letters and telegraSome of the sophisticated illustrations which made Agostino Nanni famous in Italy, in the, held together in a “folder” with “Calendar Situation” handwritten on top. It contains the entire meticulous, detailed exchange of correspondence. Along with the commercial correspondence and the debate on assignment of the production order, the main correspondent was the author of the preliminary sketch that was so much appreciated that it was used for the Federation calendar: the artist Nino Nanni. In order to discover his birth data, we have to go to Montecavolo di Quattro Castella, in the Reggio Emilia area, where - the files still exist to bear witness – number 148 of the birth registry records – in the beautiful ornate writing of the deputy municipal secretary Catullo Strozzi – that a baby called Giacomo, Gian Antonio, Francesco was born to Agostino Nanni, telegraph employee and Marianna Zannoni, his wife, on 13 August 1888. This was Nanni of courseSome of the sophisticated illustrations which made Agostino Nanni famous in Italy, in the Thirties.Some of the sophisticated illustrations which made Agostino Nanni famous in Italy, in the Thirties.. They barely remember it any more in Montecavolo, probablybecause Nanni didn’t stay very long in the village. He went to Bologna where he received a diploma from the Academy of Fine Arts. There isn’t much on him in Bologna either, and in fact we find him in Milan in 1912 where he joins the prestigious staff of Casa Ricordi. He doesn’t move from Milan and is here until his death on 18 October 1969. In 1917 he became famous for Il ritorno [“the return”], the postcard of the conscript leaving for the front who is embracing his lady-love within the folds of his trench coat and seems to be whispering “Good-bye, my love, good-bye!”: tens of thousands of these post-cards were printed and there wasn’t a soldier who didn’t have it in his wallet along with his other dearest mementos. The young soldiers had a saying at the time: “we only have three real comforts in the trenches: the Contessa Azzurra fragrance, Strega liquor and the Ritorno postcard” Almost all the big companies wanted him for their advertising: from Cinzano to Campari, Martini, Ramazzotti and Alfa Romeo to Isotta Fraschini, Bugatti, Michelin, and Pirelli. His Pierettes, or the tanned, irresistible, androgynes, seduced temptresses, advertising Avoriolina Bertelli [toothpaste] or Cipria Takalon, used to avoid a shiny nose when dancing with the Prince. To hear them say “This is my ballerina!” But that’s another story.