The future of the director of the Florence Uffizi is the subject of much speculation

Rome. A bitter defeat for Eike Schmidt. The iconic former director of the Uffizi Gallery failed to win the Florence City Hall. His list supported by right-wing parties, including that of Giorgia Meloni, Fratelli d’Italia, came in far behind that of his centre-left rival. The capital of Tuscany elected Sara Funaro, the deputy mayor of the outgoing city, with over 60% of the vote.

“We must save Private Schmidt!” we hear in the corridors of the Ministry of Culture. It was in fact the minister Gennaro Sangiuliano who had pushed the German Eike Schmidt, naturalized Italian last December, into the battle to steal from the left his historic Tuscan stronghold. Barely appointed director of the Capodimonte Museum in Naples, the former director of the Uffizi had announced his intention to return to Florence to sit in the mayor’s chair. “He won’t even find a chair if he returns to Capodimonte!” commented Vincenzo De Luca, President of the Campania Region. I find his behavior insulting to the city (of Naples). To be appointed museum director only to immediately abandon his duties and launch into an electoral campaign, reserving the possibility of returning if he is defeated at the polls, is disrespectful. He has offended our dignity.”

The mayor of Naples echoes this. “He disrespected the whole city,” Gaetano Manfredi insists. A return that is not expected to be full-time if we are to believe the main person concerned, who has always ignored controversy. He initially ignored those who questioned his eligibility. The director general of an administration can only stand for election on condition that he resigns or takes leave without receiving any remuneration. Eike Schmidt is now not afraid of raising new criticism by assuring that he wants to both resume his post as director of Capodimonte in Naples and lead the municipal opposition in Florence. “I have already had a series of videoconferences with my colleagues from Capodimonte. I have always worked as a foursome, I am not worried,” he boasted.

A confidence that can be explained by the assurance obtained from Gennaro Sangiuliano of an upcoming “parachuting”. “Private Schmidt”, who does not fail to make it known that he maintains excellent relations with the holder of the Culture portfolio, would thus be saved by landing in the chair of director of one of the four departments recently established as part of a general reorganization. These are the departments of general administration, protection of cultural heritage, promotion of cultural heritage and cultural activities.

This possible nomination is already causing some gnashing of teeth within the ministry, since Eike Schmidt’s future position could be the one coveted by Massimo Osanna, the current director general of the national museums. Gennaro Sangiuliano could only cross paths with his protégé. The Minister of Culture very often stays in his native region, Campania. His intentions to become its president in the elections that will be held there next year are becoming increasingly difficult to hide.

Similar Posts