PRESERVING VIZCAYA FOR FUTURE GENERATIONS
Vizcaya continues to prioritize stewardship with a wide range of art conservation and architectural preservation projects. Hurricane Irma Repairs Completed: With support from Miami-Dade County and FEMA, this year we completed the many repair projects necessitated by Hurricane Irma’s sitewide devastation in 2017. At the same time, we introduced creative mitigation strategies to better protect Vizcaya against future storm events. This complex work included the following: • Restoration of the Tea House, Barge and Boat Landing • Restoration of the Marine Garden • Replacement of the roofs at the Main House and several Village buildings • Restoration of the Café and Shop • Replacement of the air handlers that serve the Main House’s first floor • Replacement of Main House flood doors Village Construction Underway: This summer, we kicked off two construction projects in the Vizcaya Village. The first involves removal of the non-historic former museum structure on the site, establishing a 40’ plant buffer with our Bay Heights neighbors, and renovating the historic Paint Shop to provide horticulture facilities. The second is the renovation of the historic Superintendent’s House, which will serve as the gateway into the Vizcaya Village for pedestrians, cyclists and Metrorail users. Selection of Architects and Engineers: Vizcaya selected a team led by renowned New York-based historic preservation architects Beyer Blinder Belle to undertake the next phase of capital projects at the estate. Their initial work will include the complex project to replace the windows and doors in the Main House with impact-resistant models, which is funded substantially by a FEMA mitigation grant. Barge Herm Conservation: Vizcaya is undertaking a major campaign to restore the fragile figural sculptures known as “herms” at the center of the Barge. Three of the herm sculptures will be strengthened and reinstalled on the Barge, the fourth, which was knocked into Biscayne Bay during Hurricane Irma, has already been conserved and a replica will be displayed. Painting Conservation: Five deteriorated landscape paintings in Vizcaya’s Galleon Sitting Room were deinstalled and sent for comprehensive treatment by a local conservator. National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) Grant: Through the NEH Cares Act grant awarded to Vizcaya this year, staff has undertaken several conservation projects in public view for our visitors to observe. These have included the cleaning of two urns in the Entrance Hall and the repair and inpainting of two dragon light fixtures. Work on the baptismal font in the Living Room is ongoing and will be completed in 2023. Dade Heritage Trust awarded Vizcaya one of its annual historic preservation awards at the organization’s annual meeting on April 21, 2022 in recognition of the beautiful work done to restore Vizcaya’s Tea House (right).
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