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Over the last few years, contemporary artists have fallen in love with San Gimignano. So much so, in fact, they created site-specific art for the historical centre.

Contemporary Art

San Gimignano is a place of historic wonder. It is also a forward-looking destination for creative souls. Come to this Tuscan piece of heaven to see great contemporary art and be inspired.

Over the last few years, contemporary artists have fallen in love with San Gimignano. So much so, in fact, they created site-specific art for the historical centre. Affinità, a project curated by Giuliano Briganti and Luisa Laureati between 1991 and 1994, involves works that appear unexpectedly throughout San Gimignano. It was intended to create a more “active” experience for the famous mediaeval town.

The art takes the form of contemporary “infiltrations” (R. Fuchs) in public spaces. Eschewing the monumental, the works are intended to reinvigorate outlying or decaying parts of town, or to revitalise the cultural and aesthetic value of certain sites. The pieces, by five Arte Povera artists, can be seen in the church of San Jacopo (Kounellis’s "San Gimignano"), the church of Sant’Agostino (Paolini’s Meridiana), on the vault of vicolo dei Bongi (Nunzio’s "Senza titolo," or Untitled), in Palazzo del Podestà (Fabro’s" L’Italia all’asta," or Italy on Auction), and on a spur of the Rocca (Mattiacci’s "Equilibrio compresso," or Compressed Equilibrium).

If you lift your head in the historic center of San Gimignano, you'll discover contemporary treasures such as “Italia all’asta” (Fabro  Affinità 1994).  – © Stefano Cannas / Fondazione Sistema Toscana
If you lift your head in the historic center of San Gimignano, you'll discover contemporary treasures such as “Italia all’asta” (Fabro Affinità 1994). – © Stefano Cannas / Fondazione Sistema Toscana

The Arte all’Arte project was launched in 1990, and was promoted by the Associazione Arte Continua of San Gimignano. Among the permanent installations are Ilya Kabakov’s "The Weakening Voice," 1998, in Colle Val d’Elsa; Mimmo Paladino’s "I dormienti" (The Sleepers), 1998–2000, at the Fonte delle Fate, Poggibonsi; Antony Gormley’s "Fai spazio/Prendi Posto" (Make Room/Take a Place), 2004, in various sites around Poggibonsi; Joseph Kosuth’s "La sedia davanti alla porta," in San Gimignano.

Visitors will bump into another sculpture at the Poggio Imperiale Fortress.
Visitors will bump into another sculpture at the Poggio Imperiale Fortress.

The project concluded in 2005 with an evocative underground installation by Anish Kapoor entitled "Underground." Then in 2008, American artist Kiki Smith donated three more sculptures, one each for San Gimignano, Colle Val d’Elsa, and Poggibonsi, which will be positioned soon. The Galleria De Grada recently allocated a room to document this project through the years.

Visit

Contemporary Art

Hours

High season (April 1 - September 30):
10:00 - 19:30
*Low season (October 1 - March 31): *
11.00 - 17:30
January 1: 12:30 - 17:30
December 25 (closed)
entry allowed up to half an hour before the closing time of the museums

Pricing

A single ticket valid two days, to gain access to all museums

Full price € 9,00

Reduced price € 7,00

Reduced ticket: children between 6 to 17 years old, senior over 65, groups of 20 people (up to two companions with free admission), groups of students from public schools in educational visit (up to two companions with free admission).

Free entrance: children under 6, residents of San Gimignano, persons with disabilities who need support and their escorts, travel guides, ICOM card holders.