Covid-19: Italy’s museums stay silent over Christmas

Italy’s places of culture will remain closed until at least January.

Italy’s museums, theatres, cinemas, concert halls, and archaeological sites remain closed over Christmas – normally a busy season – following the latest decree to combat covid-19, announced by premier Giuseppe Conte last night.

The new emergency legislation, effective from today, 4 December, extends the current closure of Italy’s cultural sites until at least 15 January, reports the prestigious online art magazine Finestre dell’Arte.

In paragraph 10 of Article 1 in the decree, the measures provide a slight exception for libraries whose archives can be visited by appointment, in compliance with covid-19 protocols.

And while it is certain that museums and places of culture will remain closed until 15 January, it is not known when they will actually reopen.

Italy’s culture minister Dario Franceschini has yet to give any indications in this regard, and Conte did not even mention culture during his address to present the new restrictions governing the Christmas season.

In the meantime, many museums, archeological sites, and performing artists have moved online, offering virtual exhibition tours and streaming live performances, in what could be the “new normal” for some time to come.