The Archive of the Civic Museums of Florence was founded in 1985, when the City of Florence split its Fine Arts Division into two sectors: the Museums Department and the Fine Arts Department (including Works from Palazzo Vecchio, Doors and Walls, Monuments, Churches, etc.). Since that date, the archival documents related to the museum spaces and their assets have been allocated to the Museums Department.
The materials in the archive consist in two major collections: those of Stefano Bardini and Carnielo Rinaldo. The history of each collection is closely linked to the artistic legacy of the two characters.
Stefano Bardini Collection
Named the 'prince of the antiquarians,' Stefano Bardini left his palace in Piazza de' Mozzi along with his entire art collection to the city of Florence following his death in 1922. The palace, later converted into the Museo Bardini, contains the archive of his activities convering the years 1905-1915. Each year of his work is divided into: Correspondences, Financial Accounts, Familial Accounts, and his work at Torre del Gallo. The documentation regarding previous years, equally interesting in reference to Bardini’s various activities, was part of the inheritance of Ugo Bardini, designated to the State and kept in the Archives of the State Museums of Florence. The record consists of over 20,000 documents, the cataloging of which is still in progress.
Rinaldo Carnielo (1853 - 1910) was an eclectic artist and friend of the Macchiaioli school who exhibited several of his sculptures in major international exhibitions. Virginia Incontri, his wife, took on the task of organizing Rinaldo’s documents, which are divided into four sections: Notebooks (published in 2007), Documents (1893 to 1910), Post mortem, and Album. At his death Rinaldo Carnielo left over three hundred sculptures to his son Enzo, who donated the home and studio of his father along with the works and documents contianed within to the City of Florence in 1957. The archival material, yet to be cataloged, can be accessed upon request.