Two must-sees this summer in Siena

Classical and contemporary art

Editorial Staff
June 29, 2016 - 18:22

Art lovers visiting Siena this summer will find a winning combination of classical and contemporary in piazza del Duomo. Siena Cathedral’s intricate marble floors, which remain covered for most of the year, were unveiled to the public on June 29. The detailed designs and narratives took several centuries to complete, spanning from the 1300s to the 1800s. Domenico di Bartolo, Matteo di Giovanni and Domenico Beccafumi were among the artists who contributed, using elaborate etching techniques. 


The annual initiative has a heightened significance during this Jubilee Year of Mercy, as it complements the cathedral’s pilgrimage route Maria Mater Gratiae, Mater Misericordiae, which features Donatello’s Madonna and Child with Four Cherubs as its principal artwork. Visitors can explore the floors every day until July 31, and again from August 18 to October 26. View more information on the Opera di Siena website

Nearby in the Santa Maria della Scala museum complex, contemporary Neapolitan artist Francesco Clemente will present ten previously unpublished paintings in Francesco Clemente. Winter Flowers in New York.




The idea for this exhibition originated after Clemente was given the commission for the drappellone, the banner bestowed upon the winning neighborhood in Siena’s famous Palio horse race. Following that collaboration, curator Max Seidel proposed a solo show in Siena and Clemente set to work on two distinct painting cycles for the occasion. The first, Winter Flowers in New York, was a five-year project inspired by specific flowers, selected by Clemente’s wife. The second portion, The Tree of Life, expands on an old archetype, incorporating influences from classical mythology, Buddhism and contemplative traditions from India, where Clemente lived for several years.


The exhibition runs until October 2. For more information, visit Santa Maria della Scala's website

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