Cinescatti – Laboratory 80
The family film heritage of Cinescatti – Laboratory 80 has been the subject of the census project promoted by ICAR-Istituto Centrale per gli Archivi since 2017 with the aim of starting a mapping of the archival realities dealing with the preservation of family films throughout Italy. The project envisages a general description of the heritage of the individual archives and the valorisation of some of the film fonds preserved, through in-depth archival work and multimedia editions that make some collections of family films accessible on the Ancestors Portal, in the section Family Histories.
The editing and video edition were carried out with the Klynt software, a platform that allows the user to consult the film collections in an innovative and interactive way, following their chronological sequence or building alternative paths. The video edition is made up of a selection of the films that make up the film collection, accompanied by introductory signs and explanatory captions that allow the images to be contextualised, also providing precise information on the people, places and situations represented, and which are the result of an archival process of research, cataloguing and documentation.
(Edited by Karianne Fiorini)
Cinescatti – Laboratory 80
Laboratory 80 is the longest running film association in Italy. Active since 1956 as Cineforum of Bergamo, Laboratory 80 deals with film education both from a theoretical and practical point of view. Cinescatti was born in 2010 from a project by Laboratory 80 with the aim of collecting family memories in 9.5mm Pathé Baby, 8mm and Super8 formats linked to the Bergamo area (city and province). After the first collection, it became clear that the material received dealt only minimally with the territory of reference, configuring Cinescatti as an open archive, free from geographical affiliation. In addition to collecting and building the archive, Cinescatti promotes projects to enhance the preserved heritage and encourages the use of Super 8 film through dedicated workshops. Cinescatti has preservation rooms and an in-house restoration and digitisation laboratory with a professional scanner for short-format films, allowing proper preservation of the original films and secure storage of digital video files in duplicate on Nas and LTO tapes. With the aim of sharing the archive with the public, Cinescatti is constantly seeking collaborations to enhance its heritage and make the archive an increasingly open and dynamic reality. Valuable interactions with other archives in Italy, such as Superoptimists and Humanitarian Society – Sardinian Film Library, and internationally, such as the Chicago Film Archives, have led to various projects that have made it possible, and still make it possible, to make the preserved heritage available to filmmakers and researchers through training and reuse practices.
The preserved heritage
Associazione Laboratory 80 – Archivio Cinescatti preserves more than 2,500 films in 9.5mm Pathè Baby, 8mm and Super8 formats covering a period from 1927 to the early 1990s. The archive is constantly growing thanks to territorial collection initiatives that allow new materials to be acquired, saving them from dispersion and deterioration, and raising awareness among local communities of the importance of preserving their intangible heritage. Parallel to the collection activity, the archive staff carries out constant research to contextualise the films through the testimonies of the donors (families and film lovers). The films conserved at Cinescatti, unique and intense testimonies, provide a precious cross-section of 20th-century Italian society in an unprecedented way; a rare personal and subjective counter-view made up of accounts of private and family life, habits and traditions.
These are the searchable videos of some of the funds kept at Cinescatti – Laboratory 80 :
The Gandini family in 1930s Italy – Augusto Gandini Collection
The Scaronis and Italy in the 1930s – Giovanni Battista Scaroni Collection
The Savoldi family of Nembro – Renato Savoldi Collection