Luisa Vertova (at right) - Art historian and Assistant to Berenson in the post-war period.
Born in Florence, Luisa studied art history and archaeology at Florence university in the early 1940s. At the end of the war, when Luisa was quite unwell, Bernard Berenson, through mutual friends, invited Luisa to come and recuperate at 'Casa al Dono'. During this period Luisa impressed Berenson with her knowledge of art history and her reading aloud in the evenings. Consequently Berenson ‘adopted’ Luisa and asked her to work on his photographic collection. For a period Luisa lived in the Villa, working alongside Nicky and BB and taking part in the social life of the Villa. Luisa remained BB’s assistant till his death, even after marrying and moving to London. Luisa went on to become a published art historian in her own right. In later years, Luisa returned to Florence where she still lives.
BB adopts an unwell young art historian (interview by Mary Landor)
Back to work and Berenson's Socratic methods