We often write about Genoa because it is a beautiful and mysterious city, often snubbed as a tourist destination because considered the outskirts of the more traditional tours.

Instead, this ancient port city is full of truly amazing corners and hidden treasures, like pearls encased in their oysters, in a way protected by the sometimes rugged character of its inhabitants. If you want to see one of these unsuspected jewels you have to visit the Museo Diocesano, right beside San Lorenzo, the Genoa Cathedral.

The church itself with its black and white bands, which in the Middle Ages was a symbol of nobility and its ecclesiastical treasure stored inside, are worth the walk.

But let’s go back to the goal of our visit that somehow is linked to one of the symbols of the contemporary USA: the jean’s fabric. As everybody know this worldwide known material comes from Genoa and its rightfully earned fame is due to its legendary resistance and comfort.

Bearing this within the two rooms, painted in a deep black color and barely illuminated by an extremely respectful lightning, you can admire an artifact probably unique in Europe, 14 pieces of blue cloth with white tempera paintings on them.

  • Valle Christi
  • Valle Christi
  • Valle Christi
  • Valle Christi
  • Valle Christi
  • Valle Christi
  • Valle Christi
  • Valle Christi
  • Valle Christi
  • Valle Christi

During Holy Week the inner walls of the important churches were covered with large painted fabrics depicting scenes from the Passion and after Easter those large parchments were folded and stored away for the next year.

Probably, due to the fact that they were treated as theater wings and not as real canvases, nobody ever took real care of them and these pieces now represent one of the rare examples of an ancient art which has survived up till this day.

Well, if you get close enough you can notice that these stories are painted on jean’s fabric, probably considered at that time one of the most time proof material they could ever use!

Somebody should warn Levis that e 500 years old washed out jeans hanging in a museum in Italy can prove its brand quality better than any 25 years old model!

Betti

How to get there:

Giovanni Segantini
Web site: Museo Diocesano – Blue of Genoa Room – No English version available!

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