The Foundation’s undertakings
Paola, Santa and Antonio Santarelli established the “Fondazione Dino Santarelli” in 2004, in memory of their father Dino Santarelli; in 2008, after the death of Dino’s wife, Ernesta D’Orazio, the Foundation’s name was changed in “Fondazione Dino ed Ernesta Santarelli”. This is a non-profit organization of social utility created with the purpose of helping, supporting and promoting the study and dissemination of the history of art and the history of Rome in Italy and abroad, with particular reference to sculpture, coloured marbles and engraved gems. It promotes exhibitions, fosters research, seminars and scholarships for worthy and needy students. The Foundation also devotes special attention to humanitarian aid and support for childhood.
The Foundation’s collection include several ancient and modern sculptures and a wide array of almost 600 cameos, intaglios and seals, now on display at the Capitoline Museums. The collection also gathers more than 1800 specimens from three different groups of architectural fragments and coloured marbles of the Roman imperial age and three sample-sets of marbles. The Foundation preserves and promotes the study of the entire collection of sculptures once owned by Federico Zeri.
The Foundation has lent numerous works of art to national and international exhibitions, in the belief that the public display of a work of art represents an elevated form of cultural promotion and participation, if the preservation and integrity of the work of art itself is maintained. The Foundation participated in the following exhibitions: I marmi colorati della Roma Imperiale, Rome, Mercati di Traiano (28 September 2002-19 January 2003); Maestà di Roma da Napoleone all'Unità d'Italia, Rome, Scuderie del Quirinale (7 March-29 June 2003); Il male. Esercizi di pittura crudele, Turin, Palazzina di Caccia di Stupinigi (26 February-26 June 2005); La lupa e la Sfinge. Roma e l'Egitto dalla storia al mito, Rome, Museo Nazionale di Castel Sant'Angelo (11 July-9 November 2008); Exempla, la rinascita dell'antico nell'arte italiana. Da Federico II ad Andrea Pisano, Rimini, Castel Sismondo (20 April-7 September 2008); I Sabini popolo d'Italia. Dalla storia al mito, Rome, Vittoriano (20 March-25 April 2009); Glanz der Kentauren, München, Antikensammlungen und Glyptothek (15 June-11 October 2009); Le forme del Rinascimento. Donatello, Andrea Bregno, Michelangelo e la scultura a Roma nel Quattrocento, Rome, Palazzo di Venezia (16 June 2010-5 September 2010); Roma e l'Antico. Realtà e visione nel ‘700, Rome, Palazzo Sciarra (30 November 2010-6 March 2011); Il volto dei Potenti, Rome, Musei Capitolini (10 March-25 September 2011); Festival Poiesis, Fratelli d'Italia, Fabriano, Spedale Santa Maria del Buon Gesù (20-22 May 2011); Sculture dalle collezioni Santarelli e Zeri, Rome, Palazzo Sciarra (14 April-1 July 2012); Gems of the Medici, Santa Ana, Orange County, Los Angeles, Bowers Museum (14 April-10 September 2013); Mestres do Renascimento. Obras-primas italianas, Brasil, Sao Paulo, Brasilia, Centro Cultural Banco do Brasil (14 July 2013-7 January 2014); Cleopatra, Rome, Chiostro del Bramante (12 October 2013-9 February 2014); Verso il 2015. La cultura del vino in Italia, Rome, Complesso del Vittoriano (15 October-17 November 2013); Augusto, Rome, Scuderie del Quirinale (17 October 2013-9 February 2014); Antoniazzo Romano Pictor Urbis, Rome, Palazzo Barberini (31 October 2013-2 March 2014); Roma 1914, Rome, Mercati di Traiano (5-11 March 2014); Le Mythe Cléopâtre, Paris, Pinacothèque de Paris (10 April-7 September 2014); Regere populos. Augusto e l'arte del comando, Rome, Museo dell'Ara Pacis (24 April-7 September 2014); Michelangelo. Difficoltà e voli di un artista universale, Rome, Musei Capitolini (26 May-14 September 2014); Roma Eterna. 2000 Jahre Skulptur aus den Sammlungen Santarelli und Zeri, Basel, Antikenmuseum Basel und Sammlung Ludwig (4 June 2014-19 January 2015); Siria. Splendore e dramma, Rome, Museo Nazionale del Palazzo di Venezia (19 June-31 August 2014); L'età dell'angoscia. Da Commodo a Diocleziano, Rome, Musei Capitolini (28 January-4 October 2015). La Colonna Traiana nei disegni di Vincenzo Camuccini, Rome, Palazzo Valentini (21-27 April 2015); Myth of Cleopatra, Singapore, Fort Canning Park (29 May-11 October 2015). Roma eterna. Capolavori di scultura classica. La collezione Santarelli, Mendrisio, CH, Museo d’Arte (24 October 2015-31 January 2016); Cleopatra. L’incantesimo d’Egitto, Madrid, Centro de Arte Canal (30 November 2015-8 May 2016); Sicily: Culture and Conquest, London, British Museum (21 April-14 August 2016).
The Foundation has given on free loan to the Capitoline Museums an important collection of engraved gems and stones consisting of nearly 600 cameos, intaglios, scarabs and seals, which embraces five millennia of history. The exhibition of the entire collection opened in February 2012 in the two rooms of the museum facing the Capitoline Department of Coins and Medals. In the first, evocative room, thanks to an arrangement reminiscent of a Wunderkammer, the gems are on display according to a chronological order; the second room offers exhaustive educational material, consisting of explanatory panels, multimedia tools and demonstrative films about the techniques involved in gemstone engraving and carving. Moreover, in April 2012, in collaboration with the Fondazione Roma Museo, the exhibition Sculture dalle collezioni Santarelli e Zeri, curated by A. De Marchi and D. Del Bufalo, opened to the public at Palazzo Sciarra. The exhibition, complemented by a scientific catalogue, was arranged into three sections dedicated respectively to large sculptures, statuettes and portraiture. Almost ninety works were exhibited, including archaeological finds up to the eighteenth century, attesting the Foundation’s particular interest toward coloured marbles and the history of Rome.
The Santarelli Foundation promotes publications on art history. Among these, the Foundation has realized the volume, co-published with L'Erma di Bretschneider, Studi normanni e federiciani (2003), edited by A. Giuliano; it has co-financed the reissue of R. Delbrueck’s Antique Porphyrwerke (2007), in collaboration with the Comitato Nazionale dell’Università dei Marmorari, on the occasion of the 6th Centenary of the University; it has contributed to the publication of L’Aventino dal Rinascimento a oggi (2010), edited by M. Bevilacqua and D. Gallavotti Cavallero, promoted by the Istituto Nazionale di Studi Romani and the Centro di Studi sulla Cultura e l’Immagine di Roma. In 2010, the volumes La glittica Santarelli ai Musei Capitolini. Intagli, cammei e sigilli, with essays by R. Gennaioli, M. Ramazzotti, L. Sist, M.L. Ubaldelli and P. Vitellozzi and edited by A. Gallottini, were published. The volume of collected essays Una dimora nobilitata da Poniatowski, Canova e Thorvaldsen. Villa Lontana, with contributions by A. Campitelli, S. Ceccarelli, L. Godart, G.L. Gregori, F. and G. Ortolani, A. Paolucci e D. Rossi, was issued at the end of 2013.
In 2016, the volume Le sculture antiche della Fondazione Dino ed Ernesta Santarelli, I, Ritratti e rilievi (2016), edited by M. Papini, was published. This is the first of six volumes of the series “Opere della Fondazione Santarelli”. The series will continue with volumes II - Sculture cd. Ideali; III - Dal Tardoantico al Cinquecento; IV - Dal Seicento all’Ottocento; V - Frammenti architettonici di marmi colorati della Roma imperiale; VI - Campionari di marmi colorati. In 2016, the Foundation has also contributed to the publication of the book Splendor Marmoris. I colori del marmo tra Roma e l’Europa, da Paolo III a Napoleone III, edited by G. Extermann and A. Varela Braga.
The Foundation has promoted and established many scholarships for worthy students; in 2013 the “Federico Zeri Prize”, in collaboration with the Federico Zeri Foundation in Bologna, was awarded in “Research in art history and the fortune of the Antique and the representation of sculpture in still-life painting”, at the Zeri Photo Library.