Rodolfo Pallucchini (1908-1989) was the greatest 20th-century historian of Veneto art. Professor of the History of Modern Art, first at Bologna (1950) and then at Padua (1956-1979), where his expert work gave rise to a prestigious school, in 1972 he took over as Director of the Giorgio Cini Foundation Institute of Art History. He then donated his large photo library to the Institute in 1989. The Pallucchini Archives provide remarkable documentation on at least five centuries of Venetian painting, not to mention other fields. A thoroughgoing research facility for scholars, the archives also offer the opportunity to study Pallucchini’s working methods and attributions. The photographs are kept in over 200 boxes, arranged in the chronological and alphabetical order of the artists, at times accompanied by the author’s handwritten notes on the rear indicating the location of the work of art, the provenance and attributions. The estimated 50,000 photographs are often accompanied by the relevant correspondence, which is very useful in reconstructing the scholar’s connoisseurship. Much of the material kept in the archives has provided the basis for key monographic studies on Veneto painting from the 14th, 15th, 17th and 18th centuries and all Pallucchini’s major publications. The archives also include manuscript notes and galley proofs for his publications, plus a large number of photographs of 20th-century works dating from the period when he was involved in organising the Venice Biennale (1948-1954).
As part of the activities promoted by the Veneto Region Committee for the Celebrations of the Centenary of the Birth of Rodolfo Pallucchini, his bequest is currently being digitised and catalogued. At present part of the material can be consulted online, i.e. photographic documentation for the 14th and 17th century.
Institute of Art History
Island of San Giorgio Maggiore – 30124 Venice
tel. +39 041 2710230 – fax +39 041 5205842