A Letter from the Chair of the Board

Dear Civitellians,

During the winter, when the Castle is cold and there are no artists working in Barbagianni or reading in the Library, Civitella Staff gets ready for the arrival of Fellows on April 29th. Earthquake repairs continue, new fruit trees have been planted, and drums of olive oil have been procured. Romana has decided what should be grown in the garden for her culinary plans, Director’s Guests have been scheduled, and anticipation for our next season builds.

In the last 30 years, we have welcomed over 1000 artists from more than 110 countries. It all began when Ursula Corning, our founder and a relative of the Ranieri family, invited both “bankers and backpackers” to her table for conversation about the day’s issues and the area’s cultural offerings. It soon became clear that the Castle provided a perfect setting for artists at work, convivial gatherings, and stimulating dialogue. Nothing makes us happier than watching this initial vision manifest and evolve over the decades.

Our values of honest exchange and hospitable inclusion are lived daily, with commitment and energy, by the expert Staff in New York and in Italy. We pay kind attention to all our Fellows, enabling them to develop work at their own pace in an environment of generosity and warmth—alongside delicious Umbrian food. Staff is on hand to assist with materials, studio visits, weekly local outings, instrument tuning, presentations of work, and, of course, tech help—all pieces that compose a rich, active community. 

While we are on the road to identifying new leadership for our next decade, the Board and Staff remain deeply committed to the values and promise of Civitella. We will stay in touch in the coming months and urge you to do the same.

Thank you for your support of our mission, and please accept our warmest wishes for the new year.

Jennifer Dowley
Chair, Board of Directors