This year’s exhibition at Forte Belvedere is Gong – “It is an almost shamanic exercise, aimed at exploring the sublime of the cosmos, the orbits of the planets and stars, the rhythms and geometries that belong to the infinite universe, so as to draw stellar maps that today, just like millions of years ago, also function in symbolic, ritualistic terms.” by Artist Eliseo Mattiacci
Unfortunately the guardian of this enormous Gong did not allow the public to go wild and give it a good bash. It was definitely the best exhibit!
An unusual presentation of grand metal structures, which did not enthuse me as much as other exhibitions I had seen and posted about in years gone by. But then it’s always a good excuse to revisit one of the most peaceful and panoramic places of Florence during the Summer period of tourist crowds.
We were in for a treat later at sunset with a wine tasting from one of the historic vineyards of Tuscany – Frescobaldi. To be followed by an itinerant theatre performance from “La Compagnia delle Seggiole” who regularly perform at historic sites, bringing to life tales of the place and characters that were part of its history. And what better time to see the Fortress, as the sun’s rays bathe Florence and fade into the city’s night lights.
Forte Belvedere is the second and largest fortress to be built in Florence in1590 – 1595, by order of Grand Duke Ferdinando I de’ Medici.
Fortifications were significant in the 16th century and at that period in Florence a demonstration of the Medici’s power and wealth. Its location is strategic as it overlooks almost the entire city and surrounding area. In addition to this, the fort served as a garrison for troops for over 100 years after its completion.
Our theatre performers are part of that garrison, ‘a garrison that awaits the enemies, the siege, the never ending wait, the miraculous hour that at least once touches everyone’.
Since the enemies do not arrive, and life passes inexorable, the garrison addresses us with what it sees every day, what is understood of that place and the city seen from up there’ A humorous mix of daily issues that confront the soldiers and demands of the Medici family to ensure their personal protection and the defence of their city.