Dumbarton Oaks Byzantine Institute - MovingImage Collection
ICFA holds a small collection of black-and-white and color 16mm movingimages: the Red Sea Monastery of Saint Anthony in Egypt, the Hagia Sophia and Kariye Camii in Istanbul, Turkey, and the Dumbarton Oaks Gardens in Washington, D.C. For preservation, ICFA's movingimage collection was sent to Colorlab in Rockville, MD in October 2011; the reformatting project was completed in March 2012. Currently, all of the original films are safely stored in ICFA’s cold storage area. Digital copies for these films are available online through and Dumbarton Oaks Gardens.The films of the Red Sea Monastery of Saint Anthony, Hagia Sophia, and Kariye Camii are part of ICFA's leading archival collection:Meanwhile, the Dumbarton Oaks Gardens film is part of ICFA's general collection. It was re-discovered in early 2011 when ICFA staff learned that three (3) film reels in cold storage contained footage of the Dumbarton Oaks Gardens. For background information about the films, please refer to these related blog posts:The Byzantine Institute and Dumbarton Oaks Fieldwork Records and Papers contains one (1) black-and-white film of the Red Sea Monastery of Saint Anthony, filmed in 1930, which constitutes unique documentation of the monastery of Saint Anthony, the everyday life of the monks and local men, and the surrounding landscape. This film documents the first official project undertaken by the Byzantine Institute and Thomas Whittemore, which occurred between 1929 and 1932.Thomas Whittemore was the founder and director of the Byzantine Institute, a non-profit organization that was established in 1930 to conserve, restore, study, and document the Byzantine monuments, sites, architecture, and arts in the former Byzantine Empire.In June 1931, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the first President of the Republic of Turkey, permitted Whittemore and the Byzantine Institute to uncover and restore the mosaics in Hagia Sophia. In the late 1940s, the Byzantine Institute continued its restoration and conservation work at Hagia Sophia and also initiated a similar campaign at Kariye Camii in 1947, which lasted until 1959.ICFA has twenty-one (21) 16mm color movingimages that document the conservation and restoration work executed by the Byzantine Institute staff in Hagia Sophia between the years 1936 and 1940. There is also one (2) color film of the work at Kariye Camii, which was filmed before Whittemore's death in June 1950. Similarly, it illustrates the cleaning and restoration work carried out by the Byzantine Institute fieldworkers.These movies were widely used by Thomas Whittemore to demonstrate the important work of the Byzantine Institute and to raise funds to continue the cleaning and conservation work at Hagia Sophia and Kariye Camii.