Salvatore Ferragamo will restore sculptures in Florence

The fashion house will donate more than 1 million euros

Reading time 3 minutes

Salvatore Ferragamo will contribute more than a million euros to the restoration of sculptures in Piazza della Signoria in Florence. Italian fashion house has already donated funds so that the masters can restore the Fountain of Neptune. Over the next three years, it is planned to restore both copies of the statue of David, one of them is located in the courtyard of the Palazzo Vecchio, and the second – in Piazzale Michelangelo. In addition, the equestrian monument of Cosimo I will be restored, as well as the statues Judith and the Head of Holofernes and Hercules and Cacus.

Fountain of Neptune
The Fountain of Neptune is a fountain in Florence, Italy, situated on the Piazza della Signoria
The Fountain of Neptune is a fountain in Florence, Italy, situated on the Piazza della Signoria

Bartolomeo Ammannati’s Neptune is made of Carrara marble and has the features of Cosimo I de Medici, it overlooks the representation of the two sea monsters Scylla and Charybdis (in Greek mythology, two immortal monsters that assaulted the hero Odysseus and his sailors in the wanderings described in Homer’s Odyssey) and is surrounded by satyrs and sea horses, the fountain was built for the marriage of François 1er de Medici who would in turn become Grand Duke of Tuscany and was the eldest son of Cosimo I.

The statue of David

Michelangelo’s David is one of the masterpieces of the Italian Renaissance. During that period, sculptors such as Donatello, Ghiberti and Verrocchio produced works inspired by the Bible where David was shown after having beheaded Goliath. However, Michelangelo chose to represent the moment before the combat. Young David is ready to strike the giant holding a stone in his right hand with a sling resting on his left shoulder.

There are three copies of Michelangelo’s David in the city. The original one can be found in the Accademia Gallery. The second copy is located in Piazza della Signoria just opposite to the Palazzo Vecchio. The third replica is in the middle of Piazzale Michelangelo.

Judith and Holofernes
A copy stands in Piazza della Signoria, in front of the Palazzo Vecchio
A copy stands in Piazza della Signoria, in front of the Palazzo Vecchio

Judith and Holofernes, completed around 1460 is a masterpiece by Donatello. Under the reign of King Nebuchadnezzar II, there lived in Samaria, present-day Israel, a beautiful widow named Judith. The king’s general, named Holofernes, besieged the city where Judith lived. The situation was critical. Judith dressed in her finest attire and took some liquor and delicacies. She went to see Holophernes. The latter, charmed by her beauty, invited her under his tent. Judith made him drink and, taking advantage of his drunkenness, cut his head. By doing that she terrified the soldiers and saved her city. This precise moment is represented there by the artist.

Hercules and Cacus
Statue of Hercules and Cacus in Piazza Della Signoria in Florence, Italy
Statue of Hercules and Cacus in Piazza Della Signoria in Florence, Italy

When the Medici family (late 14th and 15th centuries) returned from exile in 1530, they instructed Baccio Bandinelli to create the statue of Hercules defeating the giant Cacus. It illustrates the victory of the Medici House. Among the members of the royal family were several dukes, two French queens and four Catholic popes.

The greatest films of all times

The best black and white films for winter evenings

Reading time 6 minutes

During cold winter nights you can make mulled wine, dive into a blanket, and watch black and white movies. Those which characters of Sarah Jessica Parker and Chris Noth were watching in the second part of Sex in the City. true masterpieces keep thrilling and never get old. Their black-and-white aesthetics as well as acting still fascinate people. 

All About Eve (1950)

Director: Joseph L. Mankiewicz
Plot: the competition between a Broadway legend Margo Channing (Bette Davis) and her fan, an amateur actress Eve Harrington (Anne Baxter). The audience can also see Marilyn Monroe in a small episodic role. For Marilyn it is one of the first roles in her career. The movie won six Academy Awards, including Best Film from any Source award. Half a century later, an eccentric Spanish director Pedro Almodóvar creates an allusion of the story in his All About My Mother film.

A shot from Everything abot Eve
A Streetcar Named Desire (1951)

Director: Elia Kazan
It is an adaptation of Tennessee Williams‘s play of the same name which brings us to poor districts of New Orleans. An aging, but still beautiful Blanche DuBois (Vivien Leigh) and her sister’s husband Stanley Kowalski (Marlon Brando) face the contradictions. The film won a lot of awards, including Vivien’s Academy Award nomination for Best Actress which, according to the actress led her to madness.

Трамвай «Желание»
Vivien Leigh and Marlon Brando in A Streetcar Named Desire
Roman Holiday (1953)

Director: William Wyler
It is a light romantic comedy about a princess and an American journalist which touches more than one generation. The narrative is very simple, it tells the well-known story of love between a princess and a commoner. Audrey Hepburn won an Academy Award for Best Actress for her performance. It happened eight years prior her most recognizable role of Holly Golightly in Breakfast at Tiffany’s film.

Римские каникулы
Audrey Hepburn and  Gregory Peck in Roman Holiday
Some Like It Hot (1959)

Director: Billy Wilder
The film starring Marilyn Monroe, Tony Curtis, and Jack Lemmon which is often being called the best comedy in the movie history. The story of adventurers, hiding from gangsters, touring with the women’s orchestra, is known all over the world. The film won Academy Awards and a Golden Globe Award and became a leading film not only in the US, but also in USSR.

Мэрилин Монро
Marilyn Monroe as Sugar Kane
Psycho (1960)

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Those, who love being titillated, can watch a psychological horror film by Hitchcock. The film is construed as one of the key movies of all times. The principles of showing the subconscious fear of the characters, used by the director, influenced all subsequent horror films.

Психо
Anthony Perkins as Norman Bates
Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (1966)

Director: Mike Nichols
Elizabeth Taylor confessed in her memoirs that the role of Martha was the best in her career because during the whole shooting process she was Acting. A family drama about a relationship between loving and hating each other spouses caused a resonance among viewers and critics. The film built on conflicts and cursing which realistically shows family relationships. The film won five American Academy Awards, including one for Best Actress.

A frame from Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? 
Manhattan (1979)

Director: Woody Allen
One of the most popular Woody Allen’s film takes the viewer to his favorite city. Passions, doubts, and contradictions of the characters are imbued with the rhythm of Manhattan. Viewers, critics, and new Yorkers themselves agree that the director has created a cinematic anthem of the city.

Манхэттен
According to critics, Manhattan is the best Allen’s film