Didn’t the tourist’s mom teach him: “Look, don’t touch!” The lovely piece – the Virgin Mary by Giovanni d’Ambrogio at Florence, Italy’s Museo dell'Opera del Duomo- now has one less finger because the American tourist was compelled to mess with a piece of ancient art. (See story)
Italians cherish their romantic city with all its Renaissance treasures; and when they speak about the paintings, writings, architecture and sculptures, you wonder if they knew Michelangelo, Dante and Petrarch personally. Italians live as though they did.
While the Uffizi in Florence displays Botticelli’s magnificent works and rooms and rooms of other treasures, it is the Museo dell’Opera dell Duomo where some equally inspiring pieces live: Donatello’s Mary Magdalene, a craggy wooden sculpture my son termed “Mary Hagdalene” when he saw – and loved - it. He was ten years old when we traveled to Florence. And I am certain that Mary “Hagdalene” still has all her fingers. I taught my son while in the presence of these magnificent works we are profoundly privileged and above all else: “Look, don’t touch!”
(S-R archives photo: A couple kiss each other during a snowfall in Florence, Italy)