Contemporary art is very much alive around the boutique hotel Villa le Barone in Chianti, in Tuscany. Both the most famous artists of the Renaissance and great contemporary artists can be admired.
Contemporary art, which is recognized as such in the early years 1960’s, is – by definition- the art being created today, based on new technologies, using new materials and reflecting latest means of expression, as Villa le Barone’s guests will see in the galleries and parks described in this article.
The “Chianti Sculpture Park” in Pievasciata, 20 minutes away from Villa le Barone, is the property of contemporary art lovers. The Park hosts, on 7 acres of forest, twenty-three works by artists from all parts of the world. To ensure a smooth integration between nature and contemporary art, each artist has been invited to visit the site, choose a location and submit an artistic project. A circuit among the oaks, chestnut trees, holm oaks and other Mediterranean trees allows the visitor to discover this magical place. The Park is located in front of an old brickyard, now converted into a contemporary art gallery. New sculptures enrich the Park created in 2004 by Piero Giadrossi and his wife.
In San Gimignano, 45 minutes from Villa le Barone, there is one of the most famous contemporary art galleries of Tuscany and even Italy, the “Galleria Continua” established in 1990 by three friends, Mario Cristiani, Lorenzo Fieschi and Maurizio Rigillo. The gallery is housed in a former cinema, in San Gimignano, a beautiful little historical Tuscan town and a UNESCO World Heritage Site, famous for its towers and sometimes called the “Manhattan” of the Middle Ages”. “Galleria Continua”, which receives artists from all parts of the world, does the link between Renaissance and contemporary art, between past and present, between diverse cultures.
20 minutes away from the Villa le Barone, in Gaiole in Chianti, the “Castello di Ama”, a famous Chianti winery, welcomes every year since 2000 – in cooperation with the “Galleria Continua” – an artist of international reputation. Michelangelo Pistoletto, Michel Buren, Giulio Paolini, Kendell Geers, Anish Kapoor, Louise Bourgeois, Chen Zhen, Ilya and Emilia Kabakov are among the artists whose works are displayed on Castello di Ama’s property, gardens and cellars, thus establishing a genuine link between wine, landscapes and nature. This year an art piece by Pascale Marthine Tayou can be admired in Castello di Ama. Each artist creates his work “on-site” to harmonize it with its surroundings. Visiting this contemporary art collection is fascinating. It can be done by appointment and Villa le Barone can arrange it for its Guests, together with a wine tasting.
And last but not least, a 10-minute walk away from the Villa, there is also a beautiful San Francesco bronze statue, by Sandro Granucci, which overlooks the renowned “Molino di Grace” vineyards in Panzano in Chianti,( Greve in Chianti ). Many other contemporary works of art can also be admired at the occasion of a tasting of the wonderful Chianti wines produced by the “Molino di Grace”.
A stay at the historic hotel Villa le Barone allows appreciating and admiring both Renaissance and contemporary art!