Hidden Conservation
The high number of tourists that come to visit the historic centre of Florence every year creates an immense pressure on the city. How does the behaviour of tourists affect the built heritage and what impact does this have on the people who live in the city? This project uses film in order to engage people with these issues. It aims to create an appreciation of conservation work and promote a more sustainable view of tourism. The first courtyard in Palazzo Vecchio was designed by Michelozzo and was painted by Girogio Vasari in the 16th century in preparation for the wedding ceremony between Francesco I de’ Medici and Archduchess Johanna of Austria with vistas of various cities from the Habsburg Empire were intended to make the Archduchess feel less homesick when she arrived to her new home. Over the years, changes in climate and tourist pressure have eroded much of the frescoes particularly at the lower level. Visitors are often unaware of the link between deterioration and conservation and it seems there is a need for heritage experts to communicate these issues to raise awareness for the fragility of (architectural) heritage promoting sustainable tourism. Inspired by the UNESCO Office of Florence’s management plan, this documentary strives to solve this challenge by addressing three key areas: getting to “know” the people, understand how to “safeguard” heritage and learn how to “live” together. The aspect of KNOWING concerns built heritage, in this particular instance, the wall paintings of Palazzo Vecchio, the Historic City of Florence and the basic concept of conservation. SAFEGUARDING, on the other hand addresses the methods and instruments of conservation in the Michelozzo courtyard in Palazzo Vecchio, in other words the more technical side of conservation work. The final part LIVING examines how conservation co-exists within the living city of Florence, and in which way tourist behaviour affects the site and what type of difficulties may occur in the future?

Extra media