Published on Sunday the 12th of December 2010
Let’s gloss over the free interpretation, even if it touches home, forced and at the same time little courageous, of the Antonello da Messina for institutional promotion. Let’s think about loans, the circulating of iconic works: "Saving the dust," with a provident tour of " Riace bronzes," already tell us a lot.
You wonder if he has ever been in Reggio knowing that the Sovrintendenza, with the archaeological museum restoration team, is taking care of the works’ health with professionalism worthy of a Dr. House. And not only. On this subject I’ve built a project linked with the community.
Waiting for the renovation of Palazzo Piacentini, the bronzes were transferred to Palazzo Campanella, headquarters of the Regional Council of Calabria, where the public can follow live the work seven days a week. An innovative methodology, which has seen 80 thousand people from the territory paying a visit within six months. This shows you how, with limited investments, an identity resource is used for a task that goes beyond mere territorial marketing, in order to construct new horizons of meaning. As Andrea Carandini puts it, no fetishes are allowed, but only the consideration of which artworks can travel, which results to expect, avoiding actions that could be culturally isolating.
With Settis we suggest to invest in order to attract and welcome a larger audience in the territory, constructing narratives, mobilizing local energies. We need to put in place this process if we want the heritage not only to represent an image, but an actual development factor. Cannibalization of "national icons" should be avoided for short-term operations. We leave the Bronzes in Reggio, recalling that the Archaeological Museum of Magna Greece in Reggio Calabria was the centre for the annual meeting of Mitterand, who took inspiration in dialogue with the Head of the Philosopher. This pillaging having failed, the focus is on nuragic period stone giants of Mont’é Prama, where the same thing applies. The epiphany is reached with the symbolically more prestigious piece of national heritage (maybe Western): the Colosseum, the Temple of Venus Genetrix, dedicated to the people. According to the recent announcements of the Economic Reputation Index, it has a brand value of 91 billion, an assessment calculated on the basis of ten parameters of vivacity and socio-economic attractiveness.
Even more relevant than the magnificent seven "Italian monuments", corresponding to eight times the value of the Uffizi. The revenue of the Colosseum (which, with its 5.7 million visitors attracted by the monument's magnetic appeal collect 35 million a year from ticket sales alone), the Forum and the Palatine cover the entire budget of the Sovrintendenza ai beni archeologici di Roma. An invitation to place it in the international turnover is extended: individuals can offer to finance the restoration. Rumour has it that perhaps this action was inspired by the great actor Totò who, in a famous film, sells the Trevi fountain. Announcement published in the “Gazzetta Ufficiale” on August the 4th.
I agree with the analysis of economists who see "applied models of rational management and marketing acting in a linear manner, cause and effect, indifferent to the places, the contents, the objects of its action, objective methods unchanged for consumer goods and works of art, based on maximization of short-term results and the standardisation of those decisions which were behind the crisis in which we are immersed." "Then," says Mario Resca, "you can think of Pompeii, Brera, the Palatine. And the Reggia di Caserta, turning it into an Italian Versailles." The concern increases.
Along with the healthy pragmatism deriving from the background for which he was chosen, we ask him to be the bearer of the current legislation review, which he himself defines "muddled", allowing truly to individuals in our country to finance culture, with long-term projects and real fiscal incentives, not only in terms of payment, but also regarding donations. It doesn’t scares us, even if it destroys the value of image that we mean to accomplish, "the sneer of the New Yorker cartoonist who had designed some time ago the situation as it follows: ‘ 60% of cultural heritage lies in Italy ', said one protagonist of the cartoon, and his interlocutor replied: ' And the rest is safe!
Nevertheless we'd like to understand what kind of strategy Italy is bringing forward when dealing with cultural heritage management and promotion of creative resources.
*article published on Exibart.onpaper