The Collezione Tessile "Tela Umbra" is located in Città di Castello, on the second floor of Palazzo Tommasini, in Via Sant'Antonio, right in the historical center of the city.
The exhibition is held in nine of the palace rooms, where the history of the textile company, "Tela Umbra", which the baroness Alice Hallgarten and the Baron Leopoldo Franchetti founded in 1908, is reconstructed.
Along the display, a particular relevance is given to the figure of the Baroness. She was a close friend of the well-known educator and reformer Maria Montessori. Thanks to her, a small school was created inside the workshop, where—while the mothers worked—the children could study following the Montessori method.
Old school desks and didactic instruments recreate the environment in which Alice Hallgarten’s intense social involvement and Montessori's method found an extraordinary fusion.
As the tutelage and promotion of textile art in the social-cultural reality of the territory is the mission of this museum, it displays textile creations, yarns, old handlooms, laces and instruments of various use and samples of all textile fabric produced by the workshop. The museum itinerary includes a visit to the Collection of Textiles and to the Workshop, in which all the manufacturing phases are still manually processed today.
Apart from the Tela Umbra Workshop, the New Yorker Alice Hallgarten was known for having founded Villa Montesca and Rovigliano Schools in 1901. Both institutions were open for free for peasants’ children up until the sixth grade. Their aim was to provide the required training for peasants through practical and useful lessons in daily life.
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