Lord Armstrong, the Armstrong Mitchell Crane and the future of the Arsenale

The Venice in Peril Fund

The British Committee for the Preservation of Venice


Friday 15 October at 3pm, on the occasion of the annual meeting
of the Association of International Private Committees

for the Safeguarding of Venice

c/o UNESCO, Palazzo Zorzi, Castello 4930, 30122 Venice

+39 041 520 7050, e-mail: info@comprive.org

William Armstrong: Magician of the North

by Henrietta Healed

William George Armstrong was a visionary 19th-century inventor, scientist and businessman, the Bill Gates of his day. As a manufacturer of hydraulic cranes, ships and armaments his influence spread across the world and, in particular, to Italy. Henrietta Healed, author of his recently published biography, will describe his contributions to science, engineering, industry, education and his special relationship with Italy and with Venice.

The Armstrong Mitchell Hydraulic Crane: a restoration

by Claudio Menichelli

The Armstrong Mitchell Crane is a prominent feature of the Venice Arsenale, where it was installed between 1883 and 1885. People do not expect to find this masterpiece of industrial engineering among the architectural glories of Venice, a survival that the architect Norman Foster describes as, “a priceless part of the industrial heritage of Venice”. The crane is unique, not just because it is the sole remaining model of its type and an outstanding piece of engineering history, but also because it had an important place in the naval life of Venice. The conservation of the crane will be no easy feat; structural surveys and scientific analyses have demonstrated the huge amount of work to be done. Claudio Menichelli of the Soprintendenza per i Beni Architettonici ed Ambientali of Venice and its lagoon has studied the crane in depth and will describe the proposed preservation of this great landmark.

The Venice Arsenale, from one renaissance to another (1866-2010)

by Filippo Maria Paladini

The past, recent history, and future of the Venice Arsenale will be described by Filippomaria Paladini, author of Arsenale e Museo storico navale. Mare, lavoro e uso pubblico della storia (Il Poligrafo 2008). Earlier publications include Un caos che spaventa. Poteri, territori e religioni di frontiera nella Dalmazia della tarda eta’ veneta (Marsilio 2002), and an edition of the dispatches sent to the Venetian Senate by the governors and bailiffs of Corfu in the 18th century (1997). He teaches “The history of marginalisation and of assistance” in the Faculty of Politics and Sociology of the University of Turin.

Simultaneous translation Italian-English available

For further information:

+44 7715493037, nicky.baly@veniceinperil.org

The event takes place in the framework of the

UNESCO-International Private Committees for the Safeguarding of Venice joint Programme