Expatriate Gardens in Tuscany:Planting Ideas of Nationality

Author: ORCID icon orcid.org/0000-0002-0933-7801
Brown, Jessica, Architectural History - School of Architecture, University of Virginia
Lee, Michael, Department of Landscape Architecture, University of Virginia

In the early twentieth-century, Tuscany was in the spotlight with an overwhelming presence in both the social scene and the body of publications and writings coming from its own hills. Over the previous few decades, villas in and around Florence were receiving new life thanks to the inpouring of wealthy Anglo-Americans. Growing fascination with garden studies at the turn of the century coincided with that arrival of numerous foreign writers, artists, diplomats, and intellectuals to Florence and its surrounding country. While the early patrons made some renovations, the defining of what should be considered as Italian villas and gardens began in rural Tuscany at the cusp of the century. At Villas Gamberaia, I Tatti, and La Foce, the patrons combined their own mixed lineage and upbringings with their perceived ideals of the Italian Renaissance, making a visible display of the confluence. Viewed together, they create the timeline of power given to formal gardens to express and influence the understanding and defining of Italy by foreign expatriate elites.

MARH (Master of Architectural History)
Italy, garden, nationality, Florence, Tuscany, I Tatti, La Foce, Gamberaia, Berenson, Origo, Ghyka, expatriate, Fascist, twentieth century
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