The Golescu Villa and Golescu Dendrological Park in Câmpulung Muscel, Argeş County, owned by Pro Patrimonio Foundation, is an exceptional architectural ensemble. It represents a living example of rescue, research, and maintenance of cultural heritage through various modes of use and habitation.
The Golescu complex works as a Cultural Landscape Observatory, with all its components (natural and man-made architecture, landscape, social values, community relations, living habits, etc.) through projects and workshops held annually. It has become one of the few cases of successful conservation, progressive restoration, and integration of a heritage objective into community life.
Since 2021, Pro Patrimonio Foundation proposes a productive model of cultural and entrepreneurial development through the Creative Residency Accelerator programme. Fostering creation and cultural education, access to knowledge production, encouraging artistic experimentation and entrepreneurial initiatives are this programme’s key directions.
For three years, the Cărturești Foundation and the Pro Patrimonio Foundation have established the Literary Creation Grants at Vila Golescu. The program was born from the desire to promote and encourage the development of contemporary Romanian literature, starting with the support given to its authors. Three years in a row, seven writers and poets stayed in residence at Vila Golescu and at the end each produced an event for the local community called “Readings in residence.”
Over the course of several weeks in 2022, an environmental residency was organized at Vila Golescu together with L’Atelier Au Son with the support of OIF (International Organization of Francophonie). High school students from Câmpulung Muscel went through a mentoring program to create podcasts on citizenship, environment, and questions about their future but also the future of their city.
During 2022, Pro Patrimonio Foundation has been conducting a cultural, creative, interdisciplinary project in Câmpulung Muscel, bringing together translators and linguists, chefs and gastronomic experts, students and craftsmen, in a unique concept dedicated to the tangible and intangible heritage of the Golescu Villa. Maria Cantili Golescu’s Culinary Diary – Recipes, Tastes, Objects and Experiments follows four levels: documentation, gastronomy, heritage education, and craftsmanship.
Hosted in the Golescu villa and park, the event is dedicated to the Muscel Headscarf, a Romanian folk garment that is particularly valuable and is in danger of disappearing. The event is organized by the Argeș County Council through the Argeș County Culture and Arts Center in partnership with the Pro Patrimonio Foundation.
As part of our work in architectural heritage and cultural landscape, we also host the Honest Goods (link) design objects series reflecting a practical project pioneering object design and craft of daily-use objects, such as lighting, utensils, fabrics, and accessories for cooking and dining.
The Golescu complex is also an experimental learning context, still in progress: education and research through annual practical workshops on heritage; landscape design, maintenance and park planning; exploring the area and surrounding living customs; cooking; fabrics; architectural heritage education for children, etc.