Injured Beuty

8 February 2017

Siena Cathedral "Crypt" undercroft, Santa Maria della Scala complex
23 December 2016 – 29 October 2017

A devastating earthquake struck central Italy on 24 August 2016 and a second tremor shook Norcia and its surrounding neighbourhood on 26 and 30 October 2016. The Basilica of St. Benedict, the Co-Cathedral of Santa Maria Argentea and all the churches in and around the city were destroyed. The local people joined the monks in prayer in the square, before the statue of the saint who founded the Benedictine order.

The Archdiocese's works of art that suffered the worst damage in the recent 'quake are to be hosted by the city of Siena and sheltered in its very bowels: in the "Crypt", or undercroft, dedicated to the Virgin Mary situated beneath the Cathedral and in the former Hospital of Santa Maria della Scala, a place of shelter par excellence. The exhibition layout takes visitors on a journey of exploration to admire the masterpieces formerly displayed in the basilicas, shrines and parish churches of the region, while video footage kindly lent by the National Firemen's Corps and photographs taken by local reporters allow visitors to view the recovery of the works from their shattered homes immediately after the 'quake.
The project is designed to acquaint the huge number of visitors that visit Siena every day with Norcia, its territory and its works of art, helping them to grasp the tragically dramatic situation in the 'quake-hit areas but at the same time to admire the local people's enormous civic pride. Norcia, so badly damaged in its deepest core, asks for nothing else than to be reborn.

The project aims to acquaint visitors with the "wound" dealt to the people of the area and to its cultural heritage and to encourage them to contribute to the restoration process and to support the local people so badly hit by the 'quake.

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