Moving Models: Archival storage & filing systems in action

A growing collections of models (simulacra) in motion showing how documents and bindings once functioned, many examples show 16th- and 17th-century legal and accounting archival bindings and documents. The models of historic originals are based on direct study with the archival record groups found in the the Vatican secret Archives (Fondo Veneto, Sezione II) or other archives from around the world. Many artifacts feature in this collection have document security built into their physical structure.

2000-. Simulacra: Archive as Artifact Function and Format Series:

Filza-simple filing system. 1660. Italian.

Filza Simple. Vicenza. 1665-1668. A simulacrum of Vatican Secret Archives, Fondo Veneto, Sezione II container #902. Santa Maria delle Grazie, A simple filza was used for filing kitchen receipts--(also referred to as Spesa). Veneto. A needle and thread pierced through the center of several small sheets of paper to make the simple filza. This movie shows how a filza may have functioned. Condition of original manuscripts: Good, not repaired.

2000. Filza. Filing system with tie and lace point 1660s Italian.

Filza. Simulacrum of Vatican Secret Archive, Fondo Veneto, Sezione II, container 725. Monastery: Santa Maria delle Grazie. Order: San Girolamo di Fiesole. Brescia. 1660-1666. (See also Fondo Veneto, Sezione II, container 724). The filza is made with cartone paper boards with "z" twist cord and metal alloy lace point. There are blind embossed decorative lines on the front cover. The 61 letters stored in the filza are handwritten documents describing "compra" (acquisitions). Many letters have notarial devices on the documents. There are 25 different hand drawn notarial devices called signum tabellionus in this record. Medieval metalwork and carpentry scholar John Vernier introduced me to the lace point, and its use as a way to fasten textiles together before the button was invented. John also taught me how to make a lace point out of brass. This still images below are of filza record Fondo Veneto, Sezione II container 818.


2000. Document in a textile envelope.

Letterlocking: Document in a Textile envelope Italy. 1578. Was this once a locked document? Did the textile bag serve as an envelope and was itonce sewn shut?

The original is found in the Vatican Secret Archives, Fondo Veneto, Sezione II, Container 876, Religious Order: Gesuati. Monastery: San Girolamo in Vicenza.

Original dimensions, textile envelope: 203mm x 90 mm.
Original dimensions, letter, opened: 311mm x 212mm.