A great exhibition 380 years after the death of the great scientist, who revolutionized our history with his discoveries and his method leading humanity towards modern science.
The exhibition consists of several sections that investigate Galileo Galilei's life, inventions, discoveries, the cultural climate of his time, the propagation of scientific discoveries through printing, but also the role of censorship which, however, did not prevent scientific truth to come to light, pushed by that thirst for knowledge that Dante already expressed as the need for man and his existence (“canoscenza” in his words).
Measuring time in a rigorous way, a necessity that arises from the need to define and mark the cycle of the year and seasons, civil life, religious holidays. Humanity feel time, perceive it, calculate it through astronomy.
Measuring matter in its abstract forms using the universal language of mathematics, which Galileo himself recognizes as the common element for the whole universe, the divine voice controlling everything, the key to understanding the bridge between pure conjecture and its demonstration, to find, after Aristotle, a new theory applied to moving bodies through ingenious experiments and deductions.
Measuring space without fear of looking at the celestial vault, computing the positions of the planets and then move on earth, a grandiose theatrum mundi on which individuals want to leave traces of his passage, his supremacy, even through the use of weapons perfected by science studies.
People live on a planet on which they navigate by orienting with the stars and using accurate maps drawn by new instruments, under the light of an ever closer moon thanks to the invention of the telescope.
Here is the modern person, the parent closest to our contemporaneity.
Thanks to twenty-three machines, many of which never seen before, including the faithful reproduction of the famous telescope, adults and children will discover the extraordinary world of the great astronomer, physicist and mathematician. Galileo was the first scientist to use the telescope to observe and describe the phases of the moon, the solar points, the four satellites of Jupiter, to which he gave the name of "Medici stars" (Io, Europa, Ganymede and Callisto), in honor of Cosimo II de’ Medici, and even the rings of Saturn.
The machines are philologically made by the Nicolai family, already famous for the creation of machines inspired by Leonardo's treatises, now exhibited at the Leonardo da Vinci museum in Florence and in various international exhibitions.
It will also be possible to admire the precious volume by Galileo Galilei "Dialogue on the two greatest systems of the world", belonging to the University Library, section of rare books. The treatise, written in dialogic form, was published in 1632. A year later, in 1633, Galileo was accused of heresy and forced to renounce his astronomical theories and the work was included in the Index librorum prohibitorum.
The relationship between art and science in the Ugo Ugo Collection
The exhibition ends with a selection of works of art belonging to the Contemporary Art Collection commissioned by Ugo Ugo, director of the Municipal Art Gallery from 1966 to 1985. The selected works document the relationship between art and science and in particular between aesthetics and optical and visual perception. The works on display belong to the trend of Programmed Art, as were defined in Italy the artistic experiences of Kinetic Art and Optical Art.
In addition to these works, the extraordinary sculpture in black Belgian marble made by Giò Pomodoro and representing the Sun reminds us of Galileo and his incredible astronomical discoveries.
A selection of videos will be projected inside the Sperone Gallery, including the one entitled The sound of the planets where the particular vibrations emitted by the planets of our solar system, recorded by NASA space probes, are turned into sound.
Educational workshops for children will be available in both Italian and English to explain the exhibition to the little ones and let them interact with Galileo's machines.
Furthermore, the MEM - Mediateca del Mediterraneo will host until April 12th a bibliographic and documentary exhibition to celebrate the great scientist Galileo Galilei.