Prada supports restoration of Vasari’s Last Supper

User menu


MILAN - To celebrate the opening of their new flagship store in Florence, the Italian fashion brand Prada has announced that it will team up with Fondo Ambiente Italiano (FAI) and the Opificio delle Pietre Dure to support the restoration of Giorgio Vasari’s Last Supper. This will be the fourth time Prada and FAI join forces to enhance Italy’s artistic and cultural heritage with previous collaborations including projects in Bologna, Padova and Bari. In 2010 the company supported the restoration of four large chalk statues owned by the Accademia delle Belle Arti and three arches of Palazzo dell’Archiginnasio in Bologna; in 2012 partly funded the refurbishment of the Sacello di San Prosdocimo in the Abbazia di Santa Giustina of Padova and in 2013 undertook the restoration of a polyptych by Antonio Vivarini in Bari.
Giorgio Vasari’s Last Supper is one of the Italian masterpieces seriously damaged in the 1966 Florence flood and the last still requiring restoration and conservation. The Last Supper is an imposing wood-panel that first underwent restoration in 2010 thanks to an initial grant from the Getty Foundation in Los Angeles of more than €300,000 (£250,000). The grant allowed conservators to repair the painting’s poplar panels and re-join them for the first time since the flood, but that grant is coming to an end. Conservators have long hoped to be able to finish the project by 2016 to mark the 50th anniversary of the flood. With the new funds, it will be possible to continue with the conservation work on the actual painting. An initial diagnostic and pre-consolidation phase for the colour will be followed by a second phase of restoration of the support. The last phase will be dedicated to the restoration of the painted surface. The painted surface of the work presents a series of stability problems, for which a solution has already been identified and successfully applied to the two central panels. Conservation work on the painted surface will be tackled to obtain a harmonious reading of the whole picture and an adequate aesthetic appreciation.
Marco Ciatti, Director of the Opificio delle Pietre Dure, commented:
“The restoration of Giorgio Vasari’s Last Supper is a dream come true and the final victory over the damage caused by the flood in 1966. This work, which was considered to be beyond repair, has been kept in the storeroom for the past 40 years, until the Opificio delle Pietre Dure decided to tackle this new challenge”. He continued saying:
“Thanks to the contribution of Prada and the collaboration with FAI, for which the Opificio is extremely grateful, it will now be possible to make progress on this important restoration in a significant way, making it possible to bring nearer the date on which the public will be able to enjoy the painting once more.”.
Marco Magnifico, Executive Vice-President of FAI, added:
“For FAI, it is a privilege to be able to make an active contribution to this important project alongside Prada, which has always supported us in our mission to safeguard and conserveour artistic heritage. For years, on top of promoting its own properties, FAI has worked on the public heritage and also intervenes in exceptional situations, such as in the case of earthquakes. We knew of the need to complete the restoration of Vasari’s Last Supper, almost 50 years after the flood, and that this was the last work not yet returned to its original location. It was thus natural to suggest to Prada that we participate in this extraordinarily important operation for the city of Florence, supporting the work of the Opificio delle Pietre Dure, one of the finest institutions in Italy and which does honour to our country”.
For further information about this project visit: