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Monday, July 13, 2015

Stendhal's Syndrome, parts 4832 - 4835

4832. "Have you been looking at the art?" Mussolini asked me." Yes," I replied. "And what did you think," he inquired. "Well, I thought there were a few good things in the Palazzo and..." He cut me off abruptly by raising his hand up as if he did not have time to listen to half-hearted praise.

4833. "You're from New York aren't you? Sit down and have some coffee." The Italians always know if you are from New York. I don't know why. A chair appeared and also a cup of coffee, or perhaps they had been there all along, I don't know. 

4834. I sat down, sipped my coffee and after a moment he launched into a dissertation, which I thought he might. He said, "You New Yorkers are always disappointed by the modern art that you see here in Rome. And I know why. 

4835. We have good artists; I'm sure that you can see that. But here in Rome, there is no section of the city devoted to the important art of contemporary life. We have a gallery in this part, and a gallery in that part, but it is impossible to go from one to another and "see" shows as you say."

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