Local News

Exhibit celebrates Mondavi’s 100th birthday, unveils archived papers

By From page A3 | June 19, 2013

Tuesday marked the 100th anniversary of the birth of Robert Mondavi, the innovative vintner, entrepreneur and philanthropist who transformed the California wine industry and elevated the prestige of U.S. wines internationally.

UC Davis, which has benefited from Mondavi’s vision, partnership and generosity, is commemorating this centennial milestone with a new University Library exhibition.

The exhibition, “Robert G. Mondavi: Celebrating the Good Life,” is at Shields Library outside the library’s Department of Special Collections. It marks the unveiling of the Robert G. Mondavi Papers collection, which was donated to the university in 2011 and is now ready for researchers to use in Special Collections.

The exhibit, which will remain up through December, is free and open to the public during library hours.

“Robert Mondavi’s life and legacy has made such a tremendous difference at UC Davis,” said Chancellor Linda Katehi. “We are pleased to present this collection to the public in honor of his 100th birthday, and to share the collection with scholars from around the world so that they might have greater insight into Mr. Mondavi’s work and life as a winemaker, business leader and philanthropist.”

Library archivists have preserved and cataloged the papers, which include extensive correspondence — some in Mondavi’s own handwriting — to and from winemakers, family members, employees of the Robert Mondavi Winery and contacts worldwide. The collection also includes photographs, biographical material, his speeches and travel files, and information on COPIA: The American Center for Wine, Food and the Arts.

This archiving project was funded by the Robert G. Mondavi Trust; Mondavi’s wife, Margrit Biever Mondavi; and supporting friends.

Robert Mondavi, who died in 2008, credited UCD’s viticulture and enology program with equipping him to take winemaking to the next level by applying scientific principles to European craftsmanship.

As a token of his gratitude for this education, he and Margrit have supported many programs and initiatives at UCD, particularly those related to wine, food and the arts. Their philanthropic support was instrumental in the creation of the Robert and Margrit Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts, the Robert Mondavi Institute for Wine and Food Science and the Jan Shrem and Maria Manetti Shrem Museum of Art.

— UC Davis News Service

Pat Bailey

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