Until August 31: THE SHADOW OF THE ETRUSCANS. Museum of Palazzo Pretorio, Piazza del Comune, Prato. Open Mon. – Fri. 9 am – 6 pm, Sat. 9 am – 2 pm. Admission: €4.
“In the Shadows of the Etruscans” provides a revealing look at the culture of the Prato’s original inhabitants, their Etruscan ancestors, reconnecting to their rich cultural heritage.
Rarely or never seen exhibits found in Prato are debuting at this show, but it also consists of objects from other parts of the prosperous Area Fiesolana, a term used by historian to describe the entire region of Florence, Fiesole and Prato.
The display consists of 10 bronze statuettes and 24 stone monuments. The first section is dedicated to the so-called kylix, an ancient Greek bowl decorated with beautiful figures attributed to painter Douris meanwhile the second section showcases Area Fiesolana stone reliefs.
The richly decorated artifacts give rare insight into the traditions of powerful Etruscan families. Many of the carved stone markers, found in tombs, represent their journey into the afterlife while others were used to delineate land boundaries in the region.
In addition to their high artistic value, the stones were valuable pieces in commerce, and often reused as decoration. The exhibition highlights the importance of the Etruscans of Gonfienti (the original settlement which later became Prato) in international trade and reveals the cultural and economic life of the ancient population of the territory.
The program of “In the Shadow of the Etruscans” includes conferences and lectures on art, archeology and the history of Etruria (now Tuscany) and guided tours will be provided not only in the museum but to the Gonfienti park, the most important Etruscan site on weekends. Thanks to the collaboration of the British Museum, Prisma and Vast-Lab, a 3D print of a British Museum exhibit can also be seen in Palazzo Pretorio.
The show tries to revive the shadowy and distant memories that the Tuscan soil has conserved about the Etruscans of the hills and valleys.
For further information and the schedule of guided tours see: www.palazzopretorio.prato.it