Saturday, 3 December 2011

The first weekend before Christmas

Lego Santa in the windows of La Rinascente

After spending the morning hanging around the house, in the afternoon we set out to see the Pixar exhibition. We thought it was held at Palazzo Reale, in the core of downtown, so we headed straight for the Duomo. We admired La Rinascente's Christmas windows and their Lego Santa, and were lucky enough to see the decorations being put on Milan's giant Christmas tree.

Setting up a giant christmas tree can be challenging!

Yet once we reached Palazzo Reale, we were told that the exhibition was actually held at the Contemporary Art Pavillon, or PAC. After one more car ride from Piazza Duomo to Via Palestro, and the enervating search for parking that went with it, we arrived at the right place. There was a long line outside and we regretted not having bought the tickets online in advance.

The line outside PAC for the Pixar exhibition

Since my son was just recovering from a bad flu spell, I went to ask whether I could wait with him inside the premises while my husband queued for the tickets. The doorman was kind enough to then let us through directly. Once inside, we finally understood the reason for the chaos outside: the premises were occupied by a group of angry workers from the art sector, who were holding a political demonstration. Nothing dangerous: the demonstrators were all sitting around, listening to the speech of different speakers. The problem was that there were so many of them, that only few visitors could be let in at a time, hence the long line outside the building. Visiting the exhibition was also quite difficult, because all spaces were crowded and the political speakers' loud voice was amplified in every room, so all videos and interviews could not be heard.

The political demonstration inside PAC

I have to say I was indignated. The only exhibition at PAC was Pixar's, and kids were left to wait outside long hours in the cold weather while protesters occupied their space. I think there is something really wrong when workers' legitimate right to protest is allowed to take over a kid's world.

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