FORLI IN GRAND STYLE

The town of Forlì (Emilia-Romagna) has launched a major exhibition centred on changing dress fashions from the period between 1789 and 1968 entitled L'Arte della Moda. L'eta dei Sogni e delle Rivoluzioni” (“The Art of Fashion. Times of Dreams and Revolutions”).

The exhibiton, running until the 2nd July 2023 in the prestigious seat of the ex-monastery San Domenico, now the Civic Museum, offers a rare full immersion in the changing customs and costumes that evolved from the period of the French Revolution through Romanticism, then Impressionism, Symbolism and the early 20th century with over 300 exhibits that include original historic items of clothing, accessories, works of art and sculptures, as well as celebrated paintings on the theme of dress trends by Mondrian, Boldini, Matisse, Marinetti, Depero and others, alongside iconic fashion articles designed by top couturiers like Ferré, Elsa Schiaparelli and Germana Marucelli.

Leading international Museums and Foundations from all over Europe have contributed items from their collections to the Forlì exhibition, resulting in a unique overview of changing dress styles, tastes and customs over the last four centuries.

Info: Tel.+39.0543.36217 www.mostremuseisandomenico.it

Posted on 19 Mar 2023 by Editor

 

NAPLES TREASURES A HIT IN SHANGHAI

The citizens of Shanghai, China, can admire the stunning images of Greek and Roman classical art masterpieces on view for the first time in China's biggest city and a major world financial centre, as they float across the facade of the Museum of Art Pudong, in a huge LED projection created by the Italian Flatmind Video Productions company. The images accompany the major exhibition: “A World of Beauty. Masterpieces from the National Archaeological Museum of Naples” in honour of the Year of Culture and Tourism Italia - China 2023.

The exhibition contains 70 masterpieces of classical art from the Farnese Collection of the National Museum of Naples, and includes celebrated pieces such as the Venus Callipyge, Asclepius and Apollo with Kythara.

The event runs until the 21st April 2023 and will be followed by two other equally prestigious exhibitions of Italian art and culture in 2024 and 2025, also organized in collaboration with the Italian Institute of Culture - “Leonardo da Vince, la Macchina dell'Immaginazione” (the Imagination Machine) and “Michelangelo, the Genius of Form.”

Info: https://iicshanghai.esteri.it https://mann-napoli.it

Posted on 14 Mar 2023 by Editor

COLLECTORS COINS FOR ARCHITECT VANVITELLI

This year marks the 250th anniversary of the death of neo-classical architect Luigi Vanvitelli, designer of Italy's sumptuous Royal Palace of Caserta (Campania). Among the many events and commemorative initiatives, visitors can enjoy a new permanent exhibition dedicated to him in the renamed Sala Vanvitelli within the Royal Palace apartments

A special tribute comes from Italy's Treasury Ministry which has commissioned the Mint (Istituto Poligrafica e Zecca dello Stato) to issue a new series of two gold and one silver coin for collectors specially designed for the occasion, with the nominal values of 5, 10 and 20 euro.

Two of the coins feature a portrait of the maestro from the Accademia of San Luca by an unknown artist on the obverse while the reverses carry details of the works of art connected with the palace itself.

The 10 euro gold coin (2,000 pieces issued) is part of the Fountains of Italy series, launched by the Mint last year with the image of the Trevi Fountain. This coin is dedicated to the celebrated Fountain of Diana and Actaeon in the grounds of the Caserta Palace, and portrays the episode recounted in the classical legend of the goddess Diana and the hunter who surprises her bathing and is punished by being transformed into a stag.

The 20 euro gold coin (1,500 examples) features a cherubim from another Caserta fountain, dedicated to Venus and Adonis, with a glimpse of the palace facade in the background, while the 5 euro silver shows a detail of the Upper Vestibule of the Palace and the Stairway of Honour.

Contrary to what is generally thought, Luigi Vanvitelli was not Italian. He was of Dutch origin and his original family name was Van Wittel, subsequently Italianized. He died at Caserta on the 1st March 1773.

There are numerous commemorations planned throughout the years 2023-2024, so watch this space.

  1. STENHOUSE

Info: www.reggiadicaserta.cultura.gov.it www.ipzs.it

Posted on 10 Mar 2023 by Editor

PLANS TO RELAUNCH ANCIENT CALABRIA ROUTE

With the Old Appia Way finally heading for official UNESCO recognition, another ancient route – the 2,200 year-old Strada Regia di Calabria (Main Road of Calabria) – is being brought to light by historian and architect Luca Esposito, a member of the Archeoclub D'Italia, one of Italy's foremost associations for the conservation and promotion of historic artistic heritage.

After eight years of research Esposito has traced out the first part of the ancient Roman route linking Naples to Castrovillari (Cosenza) in Calabria. The route which incorporated part of the Roman Via Popilia, was virtually cancelled out by the construction of the modern A3 Salerno-Calabria Autostrada del Mediterraneo in 1962.

The original road was some 400 kms long and passed through 44 towns and villages. Its continuous use through the centuries is bourne out by the 5 UNESCO Heritage sites along the route, as well as the remains of numerous old inns, 19th century postal stations and innumerable other historic sites, all of which Esposito has traced, mapped and published in Open-Source software.

The 44 localities on the route are now pooling their resources with view to launching new tourist treks and special interest guided tours along the re-discovered Old Strada Regia.

Info: Tel. +39.0644202250 www.archeoclubitalia.it www.academia.edu

 

 

 

Posted on 06 Mar 2023 by Editor

RAMSES MUMMY ON SHOW IN ROME

 

A precise replica of the mummy of Ramses II, the most celebrated Ancient Egyptian Pharaoh, is at present on show in the Piacentiniana Room of the Palazzo del Rectorate in La Sapienza University of Rome.

 

 

 

While the precious original has remained in the National Museum of the Egyptian Civilization in Cairo, Egypt, advanced modern technology allows Rome visitors to admire a perfect three dimensional copy of “Il faraone immortale”, (the Immortal Pharaoh) complete with skin reconstructed with organic materials and facial features recreated by the specialists of the University's Centro SAPeri&Co research centre, according to the 3D image published by the Liverpool John Moore's University, England.

Ramses died at the venerable age of 90. According to his portrait, he was a handsome man with a prominent nose and a thin bony face.

The exhibition includes a reconstruction of the funeral chamber of Ramses from the Valley of the Kings as well as sensorial experiences, like the scent of the incense used in the embalming process, and also a historic recreation of the celebrated Battle of Qadesh (1274.BC) between the Egyptians and the Hittites.

Ramses II has the unfortunate honour of being identified with the legend of the Exodus of the Hebrew slaves from captivity in Egypt. However, modern archaeological research has found no evidence to support this story.

Info: Tel. +39.06.49694315 www.uniroma1.it polomusealesapienza@uniroma1.it

Posted on 02 Mar 2023 by Editor

CREMONA: VIOLINS AND MORE

Cremona, the “City of Violins”, has expanded its considerable cultural attractions to include Ancient Roman art. The celebrated Violin Museum is staging an exhibition of fragments of Roman murals found during excavation campaigns of luxurious Roman residences in the city centre over the past twenty years.

The title: “Pictura Tactitum Poema”, with subtitle: “Myths and Scenes from the Cremona Domus” is on show until the 21st May 2023. Of particular interest is the cycle relating to the Myth of Arianna, who helped the Greek warrior Theseus to escape from the Labyrinth after he had slain the Minotaur, and who was subsequently abandoned on the Island of Naxos by the ungrateful hero. Luckily she caught the eye of the God of Wine Dionysus who rescued her. Included among the exhibits are also votive objects from the Archaeological Museum of Mantova, Ostia Antica and Pompeii centred round the cult of the Roman household gods, known as Lares.

This is also a good opportunity to visit the museum's fascinating collection of stringed instruments, including the violins produced in Cremona by masters like Stradivari and Guarneri, still considered unsurpassed three centuries later.

Info: Tel. +39.0372.407081 www.musei.comune.cremona.it

Posted on 27 Feb 2023 by Editor

ART POLICE SAVE ITALY'S HISTORIC STATION

The Naples branch of Italy's crack corp of police dedicated to the preservation of Italy's cultural heritage, have placed the Bayard railway station – the country's oldest – under a conservation order to save it from threatened demolition. The Bayard station is the departure point of Italy's first train line, connecting Naples with Portici. The line was inaugurated with great pomp by the King of the Two Sicilies, Ferdinando II, in 1839 and the event was immortalized by the court painter Salvatore Fergola.

The journey of 7.25 kms was covered in 9 ½ minutes. There were 8 carriages drawn by a steam engine built by the English company Longridge, which the locals nicknamed “Vesuvius”. The line was subsequently expanded to include Castellammare di Stabia, Pompeii, Angri, Nocera Umbra and with a proposed link to Avellino.

The station functioned until 1866, when it was downgraded with the opening of Naples Central station and the Bayard Station and depot fell into disuse.

It is now partly incorporated into the Pietrasso Locomotive Museum. Italian Railway (Ferrovie dello Stato) have expressed interest in relaunching the station as part of its successful historic train trips operation, with view to connecting towns like Gragnano, known as the Capital of Pasta, and tourist resort towns on the Bay of Naples.

M. STENHOUSE

Info: Tel. +39.06.44103000 www.trenitalia.com/it/fondazione-fs.html

Posted on 23 Feb 2023 by Editor

THE QUEEN AT FERMI

 

 

 

 

 

Queen Elizabeth II promises to become the star attraction of the exhibition: “I Pittori della Realta” (Artists of Reality” ) running at the Palazzo dei Priori Gallery, Fermi (Marche). She shares pride of place among formidable masters spanning three centuries of art, from the '600 to the '900, including a Rubens “Adoration of the Magi” and two Giorgio de Chirico masterpieces.

The painting of the Queen, commissioned around the time of her coronation in 1953 and completed in two years by the celebrated Italian artist Piero Annigoni, was painted in Buckingham Palace between 1954-55. It was an instant success and was reproduced on banknotes and stamps all over the Commonwealth. The Fermi portrait is not, however, the original – considered too precious to be transported from London, but a perfect copy made in 1960 by Annigoni's leading apprentice, Romano Stefanelli for a private collector in Florence. It is considered an exact replica and is countersigned with the master's mark of guarantee.

The Fermi exhibition aims to highlight a lesser known aspect of the progression of art movements through three centuries when there was strong counter movements grew up against Modernism, in which groups of artists attempted to preserve the traditions of the past. Keeping the Queen company are works by artists Gregorio Sciltian, brothers Xavier and Antonio Bueno, contemporaries of Annigoni, as well as others who were part of “The Painters of Reality” movement.

The exhibition contains 80 works and is part of a cycle of cultural events centred in the Marche region throughout 2023. Running until May 2023.

Info: Tel. +39.0734.284244/347 www.fermomusei.it

Posted on 19 Feb 2023 by Editor

VIAREGGIO GIANTS CELEBRATE 150 YEARS

The Viareggio Carnival, one of Italy's most elaborate pre-Lent festivities, took off on the 4th February 2023 and culminates on Shrive Tuesday, the 25th Feb. The year's event is extra special, as the town is celebrating the 150th anniversary of its celebrated parade, which attracts tourists from all over the world.. The Viareggio (Tuscany) Carnival is arguably the most spectacular in Italy, with a procession of huge floats that parade along the seafront, many containing satirical and political messages. Nine gigantic allegorical floats compete for first prize, along with a long procession of lesser floats in other categories, surrounded by huge crowds of masked revellers and dancers. The 1st category floats are enormous constructions that loom over 125 m high over the heads of the crowds of spectators, with some 250 dancers on board. The procession is repeated on five different days of the Carnival season.

Viareggio's Carnival dates back to 1873 and has grown from strength to strength ever since, with floats designed by artists and constructed by workers in the nearby naval shipyards. In 1925, the technique of papier mache was perfected by artist Antonio D'Arliano, superseding wood and other materials. This allowed the figures to be lighter in weight and more easily modelled. The construction of the floats has become an important industry for the city with the creation of the Citadella di Carnivale workshops where artists build the gigantic figures. This year offers a special exhibition on the History of the event , staged in the Viareggio Gallery of Modern Art. The Citadella of Carnival is also open to visitors, with the Carnival Museum and the 16 hangers where the floats are built. The artists involved also turn their hands to theatre set design.

Over 25 craft workshops are involved in the creation of the scenography of the floats, which change their theme every year. This year's message is: “Dreams, Hopes, Desire for a better world.” that needs no comment.......

M.STENHOUSE

Info: Tel. +39.0584.580740 https://viareggio.ilcarnevale.com

Posted on 14 Feb 2023 by Editor

THE SECRET GARDENS OF VENICE

For many years, Venice's gardens have been a well-kept secret. Few tourists even knew about the Royal Gardens just off Piazza San Marco, commissioned by Napoleon at the end of the 18th century when he occupied the city. The landscaped 5000 sqm of peaceful paths, luxuriant vegetation, a neoclassical pavilion, pergola and a drawbridge connected with the Piazza, were finally reopened to the public in 2019 after a five year-long restoration work commissioned by the Venice Gardens Foundation and carried out by the celebrated garden architect Paolo Pejroni, a former pupil of Russell Page.

The Venice Gardens Foundation, a non profit organization. has now embarked on another project: the recovery of the gardens of the Monastery of the Church of the Most Holy Redeemer, which sits on the Giudecca Canal. The restoration is a joint venture, also involving the Order of the Friars Minor Capuchin, who have occupied the monastery since 1535, and the Holy See.

The monastery land covers just under 2.50 acres, stretching from the Giudecca Canal to the lagoon and includes vineyards, botanical gardens, a 400m-long pergola, a greenhouse, a bee-keeping area, an ancient chapel and a library.

According to Venice Gardens Foundation president Adele Re Rebaudengo, the gardens will subsequently be open to the public who visit the magnificent Palladio-designed Most Holy Redeemer church, (commonly referred to simply as “Il Redentore”), one of the most outstanding buildings in Venice and a city landmark.

Info: Tel. +39.041.3121700/8876621 www.venicegardensfoundation.org

Posted on 10 Feb 2023 by Editor

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