To love a place and design its future, one must know its past. That is why the San Remo Municipal Museum aims to be the story of the territory, a journey through time from prehistory to the contemporary age. Culture at km 0: The new headquarters is located inside the 17th-century Palazzo Nota, right in the center of the City of Flowers. The building, freshly restored, tells the story of when the Riviera di Ponente was under Genoese rule and the governor of the Superba resided there. Later the building housed the Matucian municipality until after World War II, as recalled by the marble coat of arms above the gateway with the unmistakable symbols of the palm tree and the rampant lion.
The museum tour is spread over three floors: the reception area, bookshop and temporary exhibition space meet at the entrance. On the second floor is the archaeological section with artifacts from the coast and inland from Neanderthal Man onward: these include animal remains, stone tools, and grave goods. From theRoman period is shown the existence of an urbe, Villa Matuciana, near today’s Co-cathedral of San Siro and a Gens Urbicia, whose bronze seal with the inscription “Urbicia Vivas” was discovered in the Solaro area. Not forgetting the excavations at Foce, which have returned an extensive residence with an attached spa structure, and those of the villa at Bussana.
The top floor houses the valuable and expertly enhanced picture gallery. It starts from thereligious and landscape art of the 17th and 18th centuries and continues with the Risorgimento figures of Giuseppe Garibaldi and Giovanni Ruffini of Taggia, who was a patriot and a scholar. The Hero of Two Worlds had honorary citizenship of San Remo and a special bond with Captain Heavy, who taught him the rules and tricks of navigation.
It goes on, then, to the Italian and international signatures of. Balbo, Beltrame, Discovolo, Grosso, Lear, Raimondi and Stracciari. These painters represented a Period of splendor formed by the Belle Époque and the roaring 1930s., when San Remo was a favored resort and treatment destination for Northern European tourism. They interpreted with different sensibilities, styles and techniques the intense colors and vivid brightness of the coast and valleys.
The rooms are enhanced by Franco Bargiggia’s bronzes and studies and plaster models by Vincenzo Pasquali and his son Nello. Pasquali’s father in 1924-26 sculpted for the City Council the famous Primavera, the Art Nouveau statue that has become the emblem of the Empress Promenade and the entire city.
In addition, the new museum contains a Permanent collection of the famous San Remo cartoonist Antonio Rubino with his children’s work in the Corriere dei Piccoli, two sketches for textiles, some billboards, and two large tempera paintings: the 1947 Moda (Haute Couture) for Maison Daphné and the 1924 Faunetta for the Morgana bathhouse.
Forcontemporary art enthusiasts, Palazzo Nota collects works by Amoretti, Biancheri, Fieschi, Fioretti, Karlo, Lentini, Maiolino, and Siffredi. Finally, it should be noted that the Civic Museum provides both Italian and foreign visitors with tablets in three languages (Italian, French, English) for virtual immersion in the history, art and traditions of the City of Flowers.
(Thanks to the San Remo City Museum Office for the kind permission of the photos).