The Venus fixers: the remarkable story of the allied soldiers who saved Italy's art during World War II

Book Cover
Average Rating
Publisher:
Farrar, Straus and Giroux,
Pub. Date:
2009.
Language:
English
Description

In 1943, with the world convulsed by war and a Fascist defeat in Europe far from certain, a few visionaries—civilians and soldiers alike—saw past questions of life and death to realize that victory wasn’t the only thing at stake. So was the priceless cultural heritage of thousands of years.In the midst of the conflict, the Allied Forces appointed the monuments officers—a motley group of art historians, curators, architects, and artists—to ensure that the great masterworks of European art and architecture were not looted or bombed into oblivion. The journalist Ilaria Dagnini Brey focuses her spellbinding account on the monuments officers of Italy, quickly dubbed “the Venus Fixers” by bemused troops.Working on the front lines in conditions of great deprivation and danger, these unlikely soldiers stripped the great galleries of their incomparable holdings and sent them into safety by any means they could; when trucks could not be requisitioned or “borrowed,” a Tiepolo altarpiece might make its midnight journey across the countryside balanced in the front basket of a bicycle. They blocked a Nazi convoy of two hundred stolen paintings—including Danae, Titian’s voluptuous masterpiece, an intended birthday present for Hermann Göring.They worked with skeptical army strategists to make sure air raids didn’t take out the heart of an ancient city, and patched up Renaissance palazzi and ancient churches whose lead roofs were sometimes melted away by the savagery of the attacks, exposing their frescoed interiors to the harsh Tuscan winters and blistering summers. Sometimes they failed. But to an astonishing degree, they succeeded, and anyone who marvels at Italy’s artistic riches today is witnessing their handiwork.In the course of her research, Brey gained unprecedented access to private archives and primary sources, and the result is a book at once thorough and grandly entertaining—a revelatory take on a little-known chapter of World War II history. The Venus Fixers is an adventure story with the gorgeous tints of a Botticelli landscape as its backdrop.

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Grouped Work ID 469f3c8c-defe-3e93-4975-5354e0b1514f
full_title venus fixers the remarkable story of the allied soldiers who saved italys art during world war ii
author brey ilaria dagnini
grouping_category book
lastUpdate 2017-08-14 05:04:52AM

Solr Details

accelerated_reader_interest_level
accelerated_reader_point_value 0
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author Brey, Ilaria Dagnini, 1955-
author2-role (OCoLC)263984526, -1- -04-09-2015 19:34, .b1324081x03-04-1401-25-11, 0374283095 (hardcover : alk. paper), 1st American ed., 709.45, 5232606, 2008055446, 308 p., [14] p. of plates :ill. ;24 cm., 940.54/12, 940.5412 BREY, 9780374283094 (hardcover : alk. paper), Art treasures in war, Art, Italian., Brey, Ilaria Dagnini,1955-, C0VIA, Cultural property, DLCDLCBTCTAYDXCP, English qEnglish., ITS64.6 20090714125658 rrc 2483ITS64.6 20090824164953 pmy 2483ITS64.6 20090714125658 rrc 2483, Includes bibliographical references and index., Italian art goes to war -- "Men must manoeuvre" -- Sicilian prelude -- The birth of the Venus fixers -- The conflict of the present and the past -- Treasure hunt -- Florence divided -- A time to rend, a time to sew -- The duellists -- Epilogue: a necessary dream., N6911.B74 2009, New York :Farrar, Straus and Giroux,2009., OCLC Holdings Updated 20110802, The Venus fixers :the remarkable story of the allied soldiers who saved Italy's art during World War II /Ilaria Dagnini Brey., VIAC, can01-25-11ma-, e-it---, qBibliographies., qBook.
author_display Brey, Ilaria Dagnini
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owning_library_arlington Arlington Public Library, Aurora Hills, Central, Cherrydale, Columbia Pike, Connection Crystal City, Detention Center, Glencarlyn, Local History, Plaza, Shirlington, Westover
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primary_isbn 9780374283094
publishDate 2009
record_details ils:.b1324081x|Book|Books|1st American ed.|English|Farrar, Straus and Giroux,|2009.|308 p., [14] p. of plates : ill. ; 24 cm.
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subject_facet Art treasures in war -- Italy -- History -- 20th century, Art, Italian, Cultural property -- Protection -- Italy -- History -- 20th century
title_display The Venus fixers : the remarkable story of the allied soldiers who saved Italy's art during World War II
title_full The Venus fixers : the remarkable story of the allied soldiers who saved Italy's art during World War II / Ilaria Dagnini Brey
title_short The Venus fixers :
title_sub the remarkable story of the allied soldiers who saved Italy's art during World War II