Ivan Rabuzin
International Documentation Fund on Art Naïf

The International Documentation Fund on Art Naif was born out of the passion of its own creator, Giuliano Tosi, for this artistic genre, a passion which, during the last thirty years, has prompted him to collect and catalogue a huge quantity of material of various nature, publications, articles, personal documents, rare and often unique original material impossible to get hold of.

At the moment, this fund hosts more than 3,200 print volumes, besides preserving the material collected by Tosi, material which comes from several hundred naïf authors who represent at least 45 nations.

Passion makes the world go round
It’s been thirty years since I visited my first naïf exhibition; to think back to that single moment means going back not just in time, but also travelling backwards through the experiences which have contributed to the creation of FIDAN today. Thanks to a casual series of events, and to my boundless curiosity, I began to follow the thread of Art Naif around Europe, pushed by the desire to get to know better and better a reality with dim borders. Travelling, getting to know, understanding, and then again travelling, getting to know, understanding, more and more, to discover more, eager to find new, unexpected information.   

That’s how I created my own collection, of works of art and documents, but above all of people, contacts and acquaintances which have often turned into precious contributors,  sometimes into real friendships : authors, directors of museums, exhibition trustees and art gallery owners, students and people who were simply passionate about it, who, like me, before questioning the value attributed to a work of art, ask themselves where that work of art comes from, and what it is doing here and now, under the big tree of  naïf. To all these people goes, today, my gratitude for sharing with me passions and emotions, for exchanging thoughts, ideas, projects and plans, for making me think, for raising problems, for accepting to fight with me battles and challenges which we sometimes won and sometimes lost, but always honoured. To all these people, I dedicate FIDAN.

FIDAN’s mission is that of collecting and cataloguing documents of all kinds and all periods regarding the world of art naïf, with the purpose of promoting its study, in order to accelerate the development of a fertile dialogue between the institutions and the public. 

Art Naïf has often been accused, both in the past and at present, of lacking solid foundations of study and consequently of having little and incomplete knowledge of the phenomena in its historical dimension, but also of lack of coordination and homogeneity of purpose between different subjects, individual or institutional, who have been involved in -and are still involved in- art naïf.

In order to make up for this situation, FIDAN wants to put an instrument at the disposal of scholars and researchers, and of all those who are passionate and curious, and the value of this instrument consists of  the quantity and quality of the material collected, but its real strength is the ability to spread itself and communicate, re-kindling a debate which maybe had been stifled too early.

arte naif italia