Peace Doves

Two important events are taking today Saturday 4th March, courtesy of Rebecca and Luca of Bagni di Lucca’s Shelley House. The first is the opening at 5 pm of an exhibition by Gabriele Piccinini a young and remarkably talented artist whose compositions reflect his often fantasiose and highly chromatic view of the world, quite in contrast with his own more reserved character. This exhibition will be open until 15th April during the standard opening times of Shelley house which are 10 am to 7 pm Thursday to Saturday.


(An ink drawing by Gabriele Piccinini)

The second is a particularly awaited event. It’s the presentation, in the Sala Rosa of the Circolo dei Forestieri, of a book called ‘Lettere a Francesca’ by Enzo Tortora. Tortora (tortora = dove) was an Italian television presenter (famous for his highly popular ‘Portobello’ programme – a sort of Italian TV version of the famous London street market), journalist and radical party politician unjustly accused of collaboration with the camorra and sentenced to ten years in jail as a result of false evidence by corrupt ‘pentiti’.


(Enzo Tortora)

From behind iron bars Tortora wrote touching, deeply felt letters to his partner Francesca Scopelliti. Luckily he was fully acquitted after almost a year of his sentence


The letters deal with the nature of justice and injustice and dramatically reveal how a gross miscarriage of justice can be accepted with closed eyes by journalists who did not hesitate to vilify him on national front pages. (In a minor way I too almost suffered this kind of outrage, thanks to a corrupt UK policeman from Essex before I was acquitted). As a result of his ordeal Tortora caught an illness, which led to his premature death aged sixty in 1988.

A very special meeting with Francesca Scopelliti, the companion who loved and supported Enzo Tortora in the most difficult years of his personal and professional life is guaranteed. The meeting is organised by Shelley House’s director and publisher Luca Guidi and the interview is conducted by Journalist Marco Innocenti of the ‘Tirreno’ newspaper.


(Francesca Scopelliti)

I should also remind you that tomorrow Sunday is not only the opening of the celebrations for International Women’s day at Ponte a Serraglio’s casino at 5 pm but also the last day you can view the exhibition in the Sala Rosa of the Circolo dei Forestieri entitled ‘nel Vento e nel ricordo’ (In the wind and in memory) and which deals with Jewish children caught up in the Shoah in Lucca province. I’ve dealt extensively with this terrible part of European history in previous posts most recently at

Never a dull moment in Bagni di Lucca it seems!









1 thought on “Peace Doves

  1. Pingback: Bagni di Lucca’s ‘Shelley House’ is No More – From London to Longoio (and Lucca and Beyond) Part Three

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