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L'Italia Futurista, Anno 2, Nr. 27


In February 2010, on the occasion of the closing celebrations for the centenary of the first futurist Manifest, the Library of the Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz launched the project of a digital archive on Futurism in Florence. The importance of Florence as a historic place

of Italian Futurism and the library’s outstanding collection were reasons to further investigate this multifaceted movement, develop an online archive to make available different kinds of rare materials which are usually restricted in the public libraries and collections they are kept in, and provide public online access free of charge. Futurist activities took place in Florence from 1911 but the holdings of the Kunsthistorische Institut in Florenz did not comprise futurist works in this early period. The collection of Futurist works started in 1955 and now consists of approximately 500 Futurist works and 40 newspapers from the first ‘heroic’ phase (1909-1916) and the second phase (ca. 1918-ca. 1940). They include unique copies bearing handwritten dedications, some of which were donated to the Library by the futurist artist Gerardo Dottori in 1960. A comprehensive choice of secondary literature on Futurism completes the collection of original works.

The PRO FIRENZE FUTURISTA project presents a database under construction whose core is comprised of the complete collection of the Florentine journal “L’Italia Futurista”, published in 51 issues between 1916 and 1918. “L’Italia Futurista” represented the main forum of artists and writers connected to the so-called Second Florentine Futurism, and published articles by Filippo Tommaso Marinetti, the ‘spiritus rector’ and founder of the Futurist movement, as well as by others. In order to illustrate the activities of the circle of artists, poets, and intellectuals who formed and strongly influenced the avant-garde movement

in Florence, a selection of digital reproductions of significant documents is included in the database. All of these documents are connected by the attribution of keywords and enriched by further information. A database search triggers a parallel search of all 51 issues of the journal “L’Italia Futurista” and a selection of digital reproductions – letters, books, photographs, libretti, drawings, audio (-visual) material etc. – from the collection of the Library and further Florentine archives. The database provides research tools for names, locations, and titles of articles or keywords. An interactive map allows users to follow and trace the activities of Florentine Futurists and indicates the institutions in Florence still connected to Futurism. The documents are also arranged in ‘portals’ dedicated to predefined topics, which enables users to find specific information on selected subjects such as “women”, “music” and “war”. The structure of the database has been conceived to enable its future expansion. Alongside the Biblioteca Marucelliana, project partners include the Fondazione Primo Conti, the Gabinetto Scientifico letterario G.P. Vieusseux and the Fondazione Longhi in Florence, as well as Maestro Daniele Lombardi.