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Dante Alighieri - Ph Massimo Sestini
October 29, 2020

Dante and Florence

On the eve of Dante's anniversary, Florence begins the celebrations with the shots of Massimo Sestini

Until Sunday, January 6 Dante 700 - A portrait of Dante and the places of the Poet in the photographs of Massimo Sestini arrives in Florence, in the former refectory of the monumental complex of Santa Maria Novella. 23 special shots in search of the legacy that the author of the Divine Comedy has left us: his words, the lyrical, political and emotional world, even his unequivocal profile in Sestini's interpretation. The exhibition, curated by Sergio Risaliti, was presented at the Quirinale in October and after the Florentine stage, will be hosted in the main foreign capitals, in collaboration with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation and the Italian Cultural Institutes.

Florence, Piazza Santa Croce, statue of Dante / photo Massimo Sestini

For Florence, the photographic exhibition is enriched with three special images, which give back the dimension of the relationship between Dante and the city. There is the photo that portrays the tour guide Riccardo Starnotti during one of his scenic tours to discover Dante's places: dressed as Dante, he declares the Divine Comedy from Piazzale Michelangelo. There is Dario Cecchini, the butcher of Panzano in Chianti, with a "carnivorous" version of Dante's poem. And finally, there is the photo in which the statue of Dante in Piazza Santa Croce is mirrored in a pool of water: a symbolic and evocative vision that brings the Poet closer and brings him back among us.  

Riccardo Starnotti during one of his scenic tours to the discovery of Dante's places- ph Massimo Sestini

The 23 shots are accompanied by a masterpiece of the Renaissance: a wooden portal, from the Museum of Palazzo Vecchio, made in 1480 by Giuliano da Maiano and Francesco di Giovanni known as Francione, designed by Sandro Botticelli. The inlays depict Dante in full-length. It is a precious work, both for its artistic value and for the interpretation of the figure of the Poet that is proposed.

"I wanted to create a reportage that recounts the presence of the Poet in our days - Massimo Sestini tells us - I have portrayed truth and forgery, illations and suppositions, everything that in practice contributes to create and keep alive his myth in Florence - my city - and then in the places where he wandered, exiled and combative". 

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