As my time at the Patrons Office comes to an end, I look back on my experience with an ear-to-ear smile. The past three months have been the most enriching time of my life—from accompanying Patron tours of the museums, to observing the techniques in the restoration labs, I have truly been enveloped by the mission of the Patrons. My admiration for all the good work the PAVM does has grown immensely and I hope my future continues to hold involvement in the appreciation and preservation of art. Having majored in Art History, my love for the Vatican’s works was only fortified as I had the opportunity to witness all the care and effort that goes into restoration projects, in the hopes that these pieces may be available to people across time and space. The work that the Patrons do truly is one of the most meaningful missions that any person can contribute, as I am now firm in the belief that The Vatican’s artworks are integral to the heart of Catholicism.
Today I took one of my last walks through the galleries, and I couldn’t help but note that the walls of the Vatican Museums radiate an essence of magnanimity. I will especially miss counting the number of Barberini bees down any given hallway, the undulating clay forms on Bernini’s angels, and of course, the pristinely restored walls of Bramante’s courtyard that seem to emulate a papal white. To think Rafael, Michelangelo, Pope Paul V, and even our current Pope Francis have walked in the very place we have the privilege of visiting, is a truly awe-inspiring realization.
I am incredibly grateful to the entire office for their warm welcome and unwavering willingness to foster my knowledge of the work that they perform here. My internship project greatly revolved around the launching of the Database, which I hope soon will be a great aid in the everyday operations for the PAVM. It was a pleasure to work with and learn from Aubrey Del Rio as I worked closely with data that will lay the foundations for this database. Being that my primary major was in I.T. Management, it was very impactful for me to experience how the cohesion of technology and art is not only possible, but also imperative for the smooth operation of an office such as ours.
In addition to my amazing coworkers, I would like to especially thank any patron that I had the pleasure of meeting—in particular the Texas Chapter Gala back in August, which was one of the most special nights of my life and I feel extremely privileged to have met with that inspiring group. Finally, I cannot express enough how thankful I am for my fellow interns Catie and Harriet. From our daily snack runs for “Più Gusto” lime chips, to even traveling around Italy together, I had the experience of a lifetime learning the ropes of the PAVM with them, as well as growing a deep friendship. We each brought our own unique love for The Vatican and I will be leaving this internship with a full heart. So grazie mille to everyone who contributed to my time with the PAVM, I intend on returning to Italy very soon!