On Friday, June 28, at the Church of San Filippo Neri in Recanati, Recanati e Restauro was officially inaugurated, aimed in the conservation and restoration of “artistic and cultural assets” in the city, including that of the Benedettucci Library and of the Municipality. Speakers included His Excellency Monsignor Nazzareno Marconi, Bishop of Macerata, Mayor Antonio Bravi, along with Rita Soccio, the Councilor for Cultural Policies, and Professor Donatella Fioretti. Representing Recanati e Restauro, both Director, Giovanni Pagani and Flavio Marzo spoke, introducing the non-profit organization and its activities and courses, thus far. Denise Tanoni, head of the Benedettucci Library, presented the new website for the library and spoke on Benedettucci’s legacy. This presentation was followed by an exhibition in the Benedettucci Library and tour of Recanati e Restauro’s facilities. A successful night!

In a moment of great attention for the preservation and enhancement of the heritage of Italian ‘artistic and cultural assets’, in our city was born “Recanati e Restauro,” a new project inaugurated on Friday, 28 June at 6:00pm, at the Church of San Filippo Neri of Recanati, aimed at the conservation and restoration of the library and archival heritage of the Benedettucci Library and of the Municipality.

The Library Center of Recanati is enriched with a new reality that joins and is integrated into a container of knowledge where conservation, protection and restoration represent its ideals. A flattering judgment comes from His Excellency Monsignor Nazzareno Marconi, Bishop of Macerata, who recalled how our territory is exceptional from the point of view of the book memory, an example above all of which is the Library of the Leopardi house. The Mayor Antonio Bravi announced the renewal of the agreement after evaluating the positive results. Rita Soccio, the Councilor for Cultural Policies, was more than satisfied—the real architect together with the Polo collaborators—for having given the opportunity to increase the various activities and workshops aimed at promoting reading, with the opening of the Media Library and the historical archive. “Now that we have the School of Restoration the University is missing,” she said, “even if we collaborate with Camerino for the digitalization of the archive.” Prof. Donatella Fioretti of the University of Macerata, retracing the history of Benedettucci, highlighted the importance for the wealth of material that with its approximately 46 thousand books representing a unique heritage, a treasure “because it allows you to go to a deep level where customs, mentality, habits are rooted especially in the local reality that does not appear in the history manuals.”

Giovanni Pagani, restorer in Rome and director of “Recanati e Restauro” with Flavio Marzo director of the Consortium of Cambridge presented the organization. “Recanati e Restauro” is a non-profit social enterprise that carries out activities with civic, solidarity and social utility aims, focused on the promotion and enhancement of the heritage of cultural assets present in the Diocese of Macerata and in the Marche region. The Association provides introductory and training courses for professionals in the sector, offering specialized seminars and a range of other teaching and training activities for libraries, archives, museums and local public schools. Here in Recanati the courses with the Classical Liceo have been started. Theoretical lessons on the history of the book and conservation problems, and practical ones, ended with the creation of a similar facsimiles of a book of the ‘500 deriving from Benedettucci. “A praise goes to the Recanati students who are very prepared and curious compared to other students we met in Rome,” says Giovanni Pagani. A second activity is aimed at students from abroad – two come from Mumbai and New York – with the involvement of Flavio Marzo and restorer Laura Ridoni, who worked in London for 11 years and now works in Rome. The intent is to show Benedettucci to people who work in the field of restoration and conservation of the book but outside the Recanatese context. Another precious collaborator is the architect Enrico Sibour, who lives in Cambridge and deals with communication and the whole machine of “Recanati e Restauro”.

The Barakat Foundation, which paid a scholarship to a student from the library in Gaza, who had chosen to train here in Recanati, had a great response. Furthermore, an agreement was signed with SISMEL of Florence; together they are studying the possibility of doing courses halfway between Recanati and Florence, thus creating a bridge with other cities. But it does not end here because later the restoration will be extended to metals and ceramics.

Denise Tanoni, head of Benedettucci, presented the website declaring that “in his will, Father Benedettucci wrote that he did not want the death of the library to give everyone the opportunity to study and today the library also lives through the site because it represents an agile tool to show all the projects “.

Following the visits: first in the spectacular rooms of the Benedettucci with the exhibition of the Manuscripts of Niccolò Vannucci, Book C, Ancient Memoirs of Cingoli in tombstones and marbles … of the XVIII century, the manuscript of Giuseppe Antonio Vogel, Series abbatus Farfensium ex monumentis tum … IV vol, restored thanks to the contribution 8 X100, and at the end in the underlying and suggestive rooms of the laboratory “Recanati e Restauro”.

Nikla Cingolani