RSA Scotland: Re-purposing heritage

Fellowship Event / Online

 -  | GMT Standard Time

Online via Zoom

  • Communities
  • Heritage
  • Arts and society

Join us for a presentation and discussion, focused around two great examples of Italian heritage buildings finding a new purpose in the modern world.

These very different projects began before the pandemic, one in 2000, one later. Both were challenging, as Charlotte Horton and Paolo Petrocelli will explain via illustrated presentations followed by facilitated debate, initially with experts and then with the audience which we hope will be both British and from all parts of the world.  For exploration are challenges and opportunities since, post pandemic, many heritage buildings - both urban and rural - assume new lives and purpose.

The earliest documentation on Potentino, an ancient castle on an Etruscan site is from 1042, well chronicled in “A Tale of Adventure: Castello di Potentino: The Restoration of a Castle” published by Rizzoli (and involved negotiating the purchase with 22 previous owners!). Potentino now operates as a dynamic cultural centre, also open to guests for other events.  As a contrasting project, The Stauffer Centre is in a seventeenth century palace in Cremona - “city of violins” and home of Stradivari.  It is designed to be the world’s first international music centre dedicated to higher education of strings, encompassing research, composition, production, and innovation. It is envisaged this project may interest many in Edinburgh and across the UK given the proposed Music School in the former Royal High School.

Speaker biographies:

  • Charlotte Horton and her family, some of whom also live there, purchased Potentino in 2000 after selling a previous similar and successful restoration project.  She will discuss the use of re-cycled materials at Potentino.  Charlotte’s previous career including working for Vogue, for Secker and Warburg and as a freelance journalist.  She was one of the 2013 Barclays Women of Achievement.  Potentino has a flourishing wine trade and exports wine widely including to the UK. Her relative Grahame Greene was well known in publishing and as one-time British Museum Chairman.
  • Dr Paolo Petrocelli describes himself as “a senior cultural manager, university professor and journalist”, and is, since November 2020, Director-General, Stauffer Centre for Strings, Cremona and the Accademia Stauffer, Cremona.  A former board member of the Rome Opera House, Accademia Chigiana di Siena and the Conservatory of Music, Venice, he is also Founder and President of EMMA for Peace and Co-Founder and President of the Italian Youth Association for UNESCO.  His various degrees, including honorary degrees, are shown on the Stauffer website along with his diverse Italian and other current academic posts.

The two RSA Fellows acting as Panel Respondents and participating in the Q&A are:

Dr Cristina Gonzalez-Longo, University of Strathclyde and ICOMOS (International Scientific Committee on Education and Training)

Dr Sean O’Reilly, Institute of Historic Building Conservation (and previously, in Scotland, of each of AHSS and BEFS)

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