Better Than TV, or The Family Dinner Show Medici-Style: Natura Morta Comes to Life
Here’s a delightfully serendipitous treasure trove of Renaissance spectacle not far from Florence, Italy. The gardens are serene, and the palace is spectacular, considering that a 30-minute drive brings you into the heart of a tourist mecca. Because this country house is off the well-beaten track, it doesn’t get the attention that it deserves…especially by those with an interest in classic Italian still life painting. I didn’t expect the extreme variety in the genre of this period, and the Museo della Natura Morta has it all! Back in the days before people ate dinner in front of the TV, there was no worry about a lag in conversation, because they simply stared at their paintings. Well, not exactly. A fine house would include a collection of artworks, and a clever host knew how to entertain with tales revolving around the scenes. Naturally, the Medicis weren’t found lacking.