In Memoriam Italian Heritage Society Member Dr. Jane Fortune by Carol Faenzi

Philanthropist, Journalist and Author, Dr. Jane Fortune passed away on September 23. Most of her life’s work was centered on the research, restoration and exhibition of art by women in Florence, Italy. In 2009, she founded a nonprofit organization, Advancing Women Artists Foundation, dedicated to this mission. Among the important works her Foundation restored were Artemisia Gentileschi’s “ David and Bathsheba.” In 2013, the PBS documentary, Invisible Women: Forgotten Artists of Florence, based on her 2009 book by the same title, was awarded a regional Emmy as Best Documentary in the Historical/Cultural Program Category. These are just a few of many remarkable milestones Jane Fortune succeeded in reaching during he dynamic and passionate life. I was fortunate to have known her and for a few years, helped direct activities of her Foundation in the United States. She was a tireless advocate for these “invisible women artists” and I am happy to say, the work will go on. She left quite a legacy. She told me the thing that meant the most to her, was being recognized as a Citizen of Florence, the city she fell in love with during her college years. The Mayor presented this award to Jane at a ceremony in Florence and with her passing, a Mass was said for her on October 9, at the Basilica of Santa Croce.

Her Foundation: www.advancingwomenartists.org

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