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Italian culture and creativity in Italian Ambassador to the United States, Mariangela Zappia, mission to Boston

La visita di S.E. l’Ambasciatrice Mariangela Zappia all’Isabella Stuart Gardner Museum (ISGM)

On her mission to Boston, Ambassador Zappia, assisted by Consul General Arnaldo Minuti, had a meeting with the Friends of Italian Cultural Center of Boston (FICC-Boston) cultural association, which will collaborate with the Consulate General in organizing, in November 2024, the Festival of Italian Creativity in Boston. The Festival, an integrated promotional initiative supported by the Farnesina (Italian Foreign Ministry) as part of the “Capitals of Italian Creativity in the World” initiative, will promote, with a multidisciplinary approach, the perception of a modern and competitive Italy, aiming in the medium term at the creation of a permanent center of Italian creativity in the city.

The Ambassador visited the Isabella Stuart Gardner Museum (ISGM) in Boston, founded in 1903 by the visionary American patron and inspired by the Palazzo Barbaro in Venice, a frequent destination of her travels. The first museum to be built in the United States by a woman, the ISGM boasts a collection of more than 2,400 Italian works, including those of such artists as Titian – after whom a room was named and centered around the “Rape of Europa,” purchased by Isabella Stuart Gardner in 1896, Raphael, Tintoretto, Piero della Francesca, Mantegna, and Botticelli. The ISGM was the first museum to exhibit the works of these Italian masters in the United States. In 2012, the museum was expanded with a wing designed by Renzo Piano, dedicated to contemporary art exhibitions.

Among the stops on the Boston visit was also the “I Am Books” bookstore, founded in 2015 and among the few in the country specializing in Italian and Italian-American culture and literature in English. The independent bookstore, located in the Italian neighborhood in the North End, is a reference point for Italian-Americans interested in learning more about their roots and for Americans interested in Italy.