I wrote this post back in May of 2011 after a trip to Sienna. In rereading it I am both amazed and sadden that it applies as much today as it did back then. Our politicians – of every stripe – still make false accusations, mouth empty promises and claim unwon victories.
Between 1338 and 1340 at the request of the leaders of the Republic of Siena the great Sienese artist Ambrogio Lorenzetti painted frescoes in the Sala dei Nove (Salon of the Nine) of the Palazzo Pubblico. The “Nine” was the oligarchical assembly of guild and monetary interests that governed the republic under the leadership of the Podestà or chief-magistrate. Though the Palazzo chapel was adorned with frescoes of a religious nature the other rooms were unique in that the “Nine” commissioned frescoes of a secular nature – reflecting the commune of Siena – its successes and its aspirations.
The Sala dei Nove or Sala della Pace holds the most famous of these works: Allegoria ed Effetti del Buono e Cattivo Governo (The Allegory and Effects of Good and Bad Government). Given what is happening today in Canada it was with a certain sense of irony that I found myself taking…
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