Europe

Christians celebrate Easter in isolation, the extraordinary display of the holy shroud reminds us of God’s love that saves
Americas, Europe

Christians celebrate Easter in isolation, the extraordinary display of the holy shroud reminds us of God’s love that saves

“Because life is measured by love”. Pope Francis said on the first Palm Sunday broadcast live and celebrated in St. Peter’s Basilica, in an empty square – as was the one on March 27, during the pray for the end of the Covid-19 pandemic. For Christians this year, Easter, in which the resurrection of Christ is commemorated, will be lived in isolation, the luckiest with their families, in many suns. The new coronavirus shows man’s impotence in the face of certain events, lays bare our fears, reveals the loneliness of the human condition, arousing a desperate need for love. In the time when the new plague devastates our lives, banishing hugs, kisses and handshakes, the need for love becomes more concrete. The covid-19 involuntarily becomes the bearer of another love message: with the closure of mosques, churches, temples and synagogues, the only place where we can meet with God remains our heart.

We then desperately seek love, to overcome the pain that is devastating us, especially those who have lost relatives or have a loved one hospitalized. The question that has always plagued the humanity returns to torment us during this health global emergency: ‘Why does God allow all this? Where is his mercy? Where his love? “. For Christians, even Jesus, on the Cross, experienced abandonment. “Because when we feel our backs against the wall, when we find ourselves in a dead end, with no light and no way out, when it seems that even God is not responding, we remember that we are not alone”. Pope Francis said, adding that “today, in the tragedy of the pandemic, in the face of so many certainties that crumble, in the face of so many betrayed expectations, in the sense of abandonment that grieves our hearts, Jesus says to everyone: Courage: open the heart to my love. You will feel the consolation of God, who sustains you “. “My God, my God, why did you abandon me?” Jesus also asked when alone on the cross.

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But sometimes, faith is not enough. We need something material that reminds us of God’s love for us. To remind us that love is stronger and this force will save us once again. “This is the Easter announcement that the Shroud brings us to relive and fills our hearts with gratitude and faith. Faith in his resurrection”. The bishop of Turin said, announcing the extraordinary worldwide exhibition of the Holy Shroud on live streaming on Saturday. The Shroud, the linen veil that enclosed the body of Jesus, shows how Jesus lived the pain, like us, more than we do today. It testifies to us his closeness, his resemblance to us in suffering. But it indicates also that the ultimate goal is not death. In his battered body we see the traces of flagellation, the crowning of thorns and beatings that prelude to the death sentence; the mold left in the wounds of the knees, caused by the falls; the traces on the shoulders of the patibulum, the cross. And again, we see the reopening of the scourging wounds, when Jesus is removed from his tunic; the nail holes on the wrists and feet, an evident trace of the crucifixion; the sign of death, in the great wound on the side from which blood and serum flow. Finally, the deposition and burial in the white sheet procured by Giuseppe of Arimatea.

The world today needs the physicality of those wounds, which make Jesus so close to us. But the Shroud ignites hope – which becomes certainty – that it does not end with death. We see the image of his body, composed and solemn, but imprinted in a mysterious way by a phenomenon that has yellowed linen as light does. The remaining blood crusts, partially dissolved, testify a contact time of about 36-40 hours. The hours of the evening of Good Friday, of Holy Saturday, of the dawn of Easter. Not more. That body did not remain in the sepulchre, there are no signs of putrefaction. The Shroud as well as the crucifix, which Pope Francis invites us to look at, helps us find something solid to hold on to, like the migrant who drowns in the middle of the sea clings to the lifebuoy of the rescuers. Like the cloak of Jesus, which the sick woman wanted to touch in order to be healed. In a time when we feel the fear of death stronger, the Shroud encloses us with the warmth of the love of the One who gave his life for us. “Contemplating that face it is not us looking at Him but He is who looks at us and invites us to consider how much he suffered for our salvation but also how much this suffering is a prelude to the Easter of Resurrection and therefore a source of life and hope for all” . Suggests the Pope. God saved us by letting our evil rage on him. Without reacting, only with the humility, patience and obedience of the servant, exclusively with the strength of love. For believers, God did not defeat the evil that fell upon his son Jesus, but supported his suffering, so that our evil could be overcome only with good, so that it would be completely crossed by love. Without a COVID-19 vaccine or medicine, the only certainty we have is that love will save us.

Fashion World’s Future and its Contribution Amid Coronavirus
Asia Pacific Focus, Europe

Fashion World’s Future and its Contribution Amid Coronavirus

The entire world is currently struck and battling the coronavirus pandemic. Nations have banned travel and enforced lockdown to control the spreading of the virus. The lockdown has majorly hit the global market as malls, markets, fashion stores are all shut. One of the industries that have been smitten by this is the fashion industry. Artisans, tailors, small designers, apparel and textile industry, are facing the consequence of the outbreak worldwide.

Many major events have been canceled or postponed, such as the Paris Men’s Fashion Week and Couture Week, Met Gala, CFDA Awards, and others.

In March, The famous India Fashion Week Autumn-Winter 2020 got postponed, and the Chairman of Fashion Design Council Of India (FDCI) Sunil Sethi issued refunds to designers and sponsors who had invested in the show and stalls for the event. FDCI has also set up a fund to provide financial aid to small designers and businesses in the Indian Fashion Industry.

Big international brands like Giorgio Armani, Dior, Burberry, and many more pitched in to help mobilize by stitching masks and gowns for frontline workers.

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Dior reopened its BabyDior brand in Redon and volunteered to produce new masks and aid the healthcare professionals.

Giorgio Armani, in his Instagram post, announced that companies Italian production plants will contribute towards manufacturing disposable medical overalls for frontline workers.

Burberry stated that the company’s global supply chain would produce 100,000 surgical masks and support the NHS, and added that they stand together in the battle against coronavirus.

No one knows how the global fashion world will recover from such a drastic economic loss. The fashion and luxury industry is predicted to suffer around $600 billion due to the coronavirus, and it will surely make the consumers think before spending on luxury goods.

Article Credit: Hindustan Times/Vogue Business/USA Today/Quartz

Risks and authors of narratives and disinformation around COVID-19
Americas, Europe

Risks and authors of narratives and disinformation around COVID-19

Fake news and misleading narratives about the new coronavirus, COVID-19, continue to fill digital platforms and social network pages around the world, with potentially harmful consequences for public health, economy and international relations. Some state actors and think thank connected to them try to exploit the current global emergency to advance some geopolitical interests or to promote their own strategic agendas. Claims that the EU is disintegrating in the face of COVID-19 are trending on social media in the Arab world and in Asia as articles covering conspiracy narratives such as that “the virus was man-made” or intentionally spread through 5G internet providers.

At the beginning of the pandemic, in the Chinese information space, there were attempts to suggest for instance that the new coronavirus was brought to Wuhan by US military personnel during the World Military Games in October, or that it may have originated in Italy. In Montenegro, the government’s emergency measures were framed by actors as being directed at the Serbian Orthodox Church. Miracle cures and vaccines ready in short time were reported by many editors with potentially devastating effects on public health and social cohesion. In Africa, hate campaigns against social and ethnic groups are going viral in some countries. China’s proactive communication around support delivery creates reputational challenges for other donors.

A research of the European Union External Action (EASS) evidenced that in false and distorted health information continues to circulate widely in the Turkish social media, while COVID-19 is nurturing anti-EU discourses and criticism towards the EU, also more publicly in Turkey of Recep Tayyip Erdogan. In the Western Balkans – EEAS revealed – conspiracy theories suggesting the virus is a US bioweapon or pretext for a foreign invasion continue trending. The COVID crisis is linked to the existing narrative that the EU is “turning its back” on the Western Balkans and to Italy. Chinese state-controlled media and social media channels strongly promoted the idea that the Chinese model is superior in tackling COVID-19, while highlighting global expressions of gratitude for Chinese aid delivery, including in Italy while EU was not doing anything.

The EU is failing to deal with the pandemic, the Union is about to collapse. The European Union accused pro-Kremlin sources to be behind this worldwide misinformation campaign, but also several domestic networks/sources in EU Member States, Eastern Partnership countries, the MENA region, the Western Balkans, and African countries. In the MENA region, for instance, the idea that the EU is “dismantling” in the face of COVID-19 is widely propagated as well Italian Prime Minister, Giuseppe Conte, entrusting his country to the will of God having finished the earthly possibilities. Words that obviously Conte never pronounced.

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Since August 2019, ProPublica has tracked more than 10,000 suspected fake Twitter accounts involved in a coordinated influence campaign with ties to the Chinese government. Among those are the hacked accounts of users from around the world that now post propaganda and disinformation about the coronavirus outbreak, the Hong Kong protests and other topics of state interest. They included a professor in North Carolina, a graphic artist and a mother in Massachusetts, a web designer in the U.K., and a business analyst in Australia.

Governments are increasingly facing with the choice of limiting press freedom or protecting their interests and public health. Reporters Without Borders (RSF), launched recently “Tracker 19”, a tool made for an unprecedented global crisis. So named in reference not only to Covid-19 but also article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which affirms that everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers. RSF project aims to evaluate the pandemic’s impacts on journalism. It will document state censorship and deliberate disinformation, and their impact on the right to reliable news and information.

Why Abu Dhabi owners backtracked to charge NHS for Nightingale hospital?
Europe, Middle East & Africa

Why Abu Dhabi owners backtracked to charge NHS for Nightingale hospital?

It started as a simple monetary transaction but was later made to look like a humanitarian act when a rival party was willing to give away their premises for free to the National Health Services (NHS) in dire straits of space to treat corona virus infected patients.

As the figures of infection mount in Britain, the NHS has been desperately looking for space to treat the infected. It would establish what they call as a Nightingale Hospital Service that is the first one of its kind as an emergency field hospital to treat corona virus patients.

Initially, the Abu Dhabi owners of London’s ExCel conference centre were approached to establish this service. London’s ExCel was demanding £3 million per month to use their premises and transform the place to home as many as 4000 patients.

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However, the NEC Birmingham stepped in to give away their premises free of charge, to which London ExCel did the turnaround on their initial demand and decided to give their premises for free.

The NEC Birmingham is owned by American private equity giant Blackstone, and the Manchester Central Complex. Both were willing to see this as a contribution to the cause of humanity and not monetize the situation.

Making a public statement, ExCel chief executive Jeremy Rees refuted any claims of charging a monthly fee and said, “The use of ExCeL London for NHS Nightingale London has always been provided to the NHS rent free.” Terming the demand as NHS’ contribution to some ‘operational fixed costs’, he further added that ExCel had since then decided to bear the cost itself.

Poland ,Hungary and Czech Republic EU trial for 2015 migrants case
Europe

Poland ,Hungary and Czech Republic EU trial for 2015 migrants case

By refusing to welcome refugees in 2015, Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic found their files in the European court, which considered on Thursday April 2nd, that these three countries did not respect the European Union’s law in that matter, at a time when high numbers of migrants had arrived, applied for asylum and been relocated from Italy or Greece.

In its judgment, the EU Justice Court (EUJC) considered that the three countries had “failed to fulfill their obligations” by not respecting the decision taken collectively by the EU to accept a quota of refugees.

The European Commission had seized the EUJC at the end of 2017, noting that the three countries had refused their refugee’s reception quotas decided within the distribution program’s framework divided by member state, counting tens of thousands of asylum seekers from Italy and Greece, launched in 2015 and which ended in September 2017.

“This decision will have no consequences. As the quota policy has lapsed since long, we have no obligation to take asylum seekers, “said Hungarian Justice Minister Judit Varga. “We lost the dispute, but it doesn’t matter. What is important is that we have nothing to pay, “added Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babis. “The fact is that we will not accept any migrants because the quotas have expired.” The Commission can now only request fines against the three countries.

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Poland and Hungary have not hosted any refugees, with the Czech Republic receiving only a dozen before withdrawing from the program. Warsaw and Budapest considered that they had the right to avoid their obligations under their responsibility for “maintaining public order” and “safeguarding internal security”. However, for the argument to be admissible, the two countries should have “been able to prove the need to use this argument”.

For its part, Prague argued that the program was not effective to justify its refusal to apply it. A “unilateral assessment” which cannot be used as an argument for not applying an EU decision, the Court stressed.

Coronavirus treatment and vaccine, the only hope for a return to normal
Americas, Asia Pacific Focus, Europe

Coronavirus treatment and vaccine, the only hope for a return to normal

It seems that without a treatment or a vaccine the coronavirus emergency (COVID-19) is destined to continue and the return to normal is more and more complicated. After Wuhan, the first epicenter of the pandemic in China, tried to gradually remove the restrictive measures for residents, Beijing yesterday recorded a new local transmission case of Covid-19 in the province of Hubei, and 18 ‘imported’ cases. In the country there are now 888 cases of return, or linked abroad. Four more people died in Wuhan, the National Health Commission reported. There are 1,030 asymptomatic subjects, after 64 others were identified yesterday, 38 of which only in Hubei. In the past seven days, among the ‘imported’ cases, 190 people have been discharged, while 698 remain in the hospital and among these there are 17 patients in intensive care. The new official report therefore speaks of 3,326 coronavirus deaths and 81,639 infections, 50,008 just in Wuhan. According to the National Health Commission, 76,751 patients have been discharged from Chinese hospitals since the beginning of the emergency.

But what are the hopes that science offers us today?

After an initial trial on ten patients, thousands of people affected by COVID-19 with satisfactory results in subjects with severe forms of infection and with negligible infusion-related side effects were treated by Dr. Lu Ming, of Wuhan, head of a delegation of Chinese doctors supporting the Italian hospital Policlinic San Matteo in Pavia in the treatment of coronavirus with the plasma of patients recovered. According to the Chinese team, positive results are seen 24-48 hours after the plasma infusion of the healed subjects who developed the antibodies to the new disease. This experimental therapy with plasma infusions from healed patients, already conducted in China, began at the San Matteo hospital in Pavia last week. The concept is to take plasma from the blood of healed or convalescent people. The plasma is then analysed to evaluate the number of antibodies and finally infused in sick patients. In this way, the antibodies themselves are put back into circulation with the aim of helping to fight the infection leading to recovery. Among the first donors are some citizens of Casalpusterlengo, in the province of Lodi, one of the first outbreaks in northern Italy that tested negative after the infection. But the results so far are completely uncertain and it is not possible to make predictions, even if plasma infusions are not an absolute novelty. The technique is already in use on people with coagulation problems, in which the risks are related to those of a normal infusion.

Work in progress to find a vaccine.

In the United States, there are many universities and pharmaceutical companies working to find a vaccine for the new coronavirus. Encouraging signs come from the University of Pittsburgh where a team of researchers coordinated by the Italian Andrea Gambotto and Professor Louis Falo have completed the phase of experimentation on mice of a possible vaccine against Saars-Cov2. The Pittsburgh’s research aims to the creation of a sort of patch that would be ready for industrial production within 5 months. The first goal of the tests is to rule out the toxicity of a vaccine. Usually this is first tested on mice, then on monkeys, finally on humans, before being produced and distributed. In some cases, the primate test phase is skipped. If it will also be done in the case of coronavirus, experts believe that the time to have a vaccine available will certainly shorten, but we cannot deceive ourselves that it is ready in a few weeks or months, it will still take about a year.

What are the other therapies available today?

In the race to find an effective cure, many hypotheses have been heard, from Avigan used in some cases in Japan, to fast vaccines. Today the most concrete and effective way is represented by antivirals and in particular by Remdesivir. This is a drug currently used experimentally and in compassionate use, therefore in emergency situations in which other treatments are ineffective. Coronavirus seems to be a staged disease, in which already existing anti-inflammatories, such as cortisone, in some cases has given excellent results as well as the use of an anti-Ebola drug or hydroxychloroquine, used in the treatment of rheumatic diseases.

But there are still many things we don’t know about covid-19.

At the beginning of the epidemic, doctors and the World Health Organization (WHO) announced that the mask was only for those who had contracted the coronavirus, nurses, doctors and those who were in close contact with possible sources of infection. Now, things are changing. WHO is seriously considering the latest scientific studies on the spread of COVID-19 in the air and has said it is ready to review the guidelines on masks. David Heymann, head of the WHO working group, said that “we are studying the latest scientific evidence and new research could lead to a change in the mask guidelines”. The Lydia Bourouiba of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in Cambridge concentrated their studies on the speed, the permanence in the air and the distance travelled by the droplets of saliva emitted by patients who can transmit invective diseases such as the current COVID-19. It turned out that a sneeze creates a cloud of both droplets and small droplets that can go up to 8 meters away. Droplets emitted with sneezing and coughing from infected people can travel up to two meters and then fall by gravity. If there are no hazards outdoors, in particular closed environments such as hospitals, without adequate air changes, the rooms could become saturated with infected air.

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Queen Elizabeth to issue rare public address on April 5 as UK fights COVID-19 pandemic
Europe

Queen Elizabeth to issue rare public address on April 5 as UK fights COVID-19 pandemic

As the death toll due to Coronavirus pandemic continues to rise in the United Kingdom, Queen Elizabeth is scheduled to make a special address to the nation on April 5. In a statement released by the Buckingham Palace, the Queen has recorded the rare message addressing the ongoing Coronavirus outbreak at the Windsor Castle and it will be broadcasted to the nation and the Commonwealth on Sunday at 7 pm (GMT).

This address by Queen Elizabeth is considered to be special since the 93-year-old British Monarch has made an appearance on television to address the masses during rare occasions, including her annual Christmas message. As per reports, Sunday’s address will be the fifth time when the Queen will convey her remarks to the nation in a time of crisis.

Notably, her son, Prince Charles, was tested positive for Coronavirus last month after which he kept himself in self-isolation in Scotland. After more than a week of self-quarantine, he announced that he is in good health and out of self-isolation.

Meanwhile, the Queen is in quarantine in England’s Windsor Place with her husband Prince Philip. Earlier in March, Queen Elizabeth released a written statement assuring the participation of the Royal Family amid the Coronavirus crisis.

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UK Prime Minister has also been in isolation after he showed mild symptoms of the disease. Later, he announced that he has been tested positive for COVID-19.

In the aftermath of the outbreak, the British Prime Minister declared a lockdown in the country, shutting down the fifth-largest economy in the world, in an attempt to contain the Coronavirus spread. From closing down the public places to banning social gatherings, the UK government has ordered the Britons to not venture out of their homes unless for essential services.

According to data released by the British Department of Health and Social Care, more than 3,600 people have lost their lives to the Coronavirus pandemic and over 38,000 have been tested positive. According to reports, the British government is looking at the death toll of 50,000 due to Coronavirus in the worst-case scenario if the self-isolation and lockdown are not following by the citizens diligently.

Devoid of empathy cyber-attackers trouble medical facilities worldwide
Europe

Devoid of empathy cyber-attackers trouble medical facilities worldwide

Hackers are without a conscience, but should they be doing so at a time when the whole world is trying to survive a deadly pandemic? Without a moral high ground, hackers are now eyeing health care facilities for launching cyber attacks.

A medical facility, Hammersmith Medicines Research, UK now feel that its effort to move towards clinical trials has come to knots end. Hackers have used encryption to lock down important and confidential patients’ record, and are threatening to make them public, if the facility does not pay up a ransom amount demanded.

Healthcare providers and medical facilities are now facing attack to their IT systems through various ransomware. This is increasingly becoming a problem in the UK and Europe affecting the ability of medical facilities to move ahead with proper treatment and clinical trials. A vaccine has still not be invented for the corona virus though there are discussions that

C5 Capital is a venture capital firm that is addressing such concerns and has now created an alliance of cyber security companies that is providing free assistance to hospitals and clinics in the U.K. and Europe. The Europol, the European Union’ law enforcement agency has been receiving news of cyber breaches from all its 27 member nations. There seems to be an organised syndicate of cyber-thieves at work, who are using a strain of a ransomware called the Maze. Sadly, “we have seen organized crime swiftly taking advantage of the proliferation of the virus. There is an increase in malware and ransomware attacks seeking to profit from this global crisis,” said the official spokesman Jan Op Gen Oorth from the Europol.

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A ransomware is a malware which works by penetrating into various computer systems, by the way of phishing. In a sense of urgency over finances and medical aid, a lot of people are being prompted to throw caution to wind and click on dubious links which then plant viruses into their computers and hack into system data. This is primarily being done through employee access of mails.

In many cases, medical facilities are being forced to pay ransom, due to urgency of treating ailing patients. Speaking to the Bloomberg News Agency, Malcolm Taylor, head of cybersecurity at ITC Secure said, “The attackers know that many medical facilities are so desperate at the moment to build ventilators, or to stop people from getting sick, and they are trying to exploit that. Taylor represents one of the companies that is part of C5 Capital’s alliance.

How lockdown is leading to leak of confidential information
Americas, Asia Pacific Focus, Europe

How lockdown is leading to leak of confidential information

As most of the population of the world is getting into a lockdown situation, as the only resort to prevent the Corona Virus from spreading any further, the way we work is transforming. Work From Home (WFH) has become the norm of the current times. Most corporate are functioning through the WFH strategy to work. But with this, comes the perils of information leak too.

Apparently, professional lawyers are being warned by their firms to be weary of technological gadgets like Alexa. It is confirmed that Amazon’s Alexa and Google’s voice assistant listens to all your private and confidential conversations, breaching the client-lawyer privilege.

Law firms have now started advices its staff working from home issued advice to staff to mute or shut off listening devices. It suggested not having any of the devices near their work space at all.

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Other devices used as smart technology at home are all Artificial intelligence enabled and can pose to be a threat to the confidentiality clause that lawyers and bankers have to maintain. While Amazon and Google has confirmed that their devices only get activated when they hear a familiar word being used with the environment they are set in, recent testing by Northeastern University and Imperial College London has found that these devices can activate inadvertently between 1.5 and 19 times a day.

Other than this, applications like TikTok are known to have been tracking every click and all activity on the user mobile devises and is gradually being banned across America. In the recent past, technology companies have been under fire for compromising with user privacy by having teams of human auditors listen to conversations without consent to improve their AI algorithms.

Coronavirus. From the plague to the Second World War, the art born during isolation
Europe

Coronavirus. From the plague to the Second World War, the art born during isolation

The Savoy-born French writer and military, Xavier de Maistre, owes celebrity to his first novel, the ‘Journey around my room’, written in the busy period between the 1700s and 1800s, between the French Revolution and the advent of Napoleon. The work was born during the confinement period, a bit like what we are experiencing these days, forced to stay home because of the new coronavirus, COVID-19. On the eve of the Carnival of 1794, due to a duel, Xavier de Maistre was placed under house arrest for 42 days. Instead of sinking into depression or crying over himself, the French author took the opportunity to compose the famous booklet.

‘Journey around my room’ is made up of 42 chapters, how many were the days of isolation, during which Xavier de Maistre travels long and wide and diagonally, zigzagging and often making the chair from which he does not walk on his rear legs he loves to get unstuck, the 36 steps to the side of his square room, commenting on furniture and objects and recalling old memories. The author’s monologue often splits in a dialogue, between two parts of himself, the soul and what he called “the other”, the beast, that is the body, which bick with grace, calling themselves with respect even ” Madame “, and from which” the other ” often comes out the winner. There is also a beloved dog, Rosine, and a servant, Joannetti, also beloved and irreplaceable, who however abandoned him, because he got married and had to move to another city. Each object that the author presents to us is an occasion for digressions and anecdotes, for philosophical observations based on a current morality, benevolent, generous and witty. The rare moments of melancholy, such as the memory of a missing friend, are always overcome by momentum with a pure, sincere and never bigoted faith, of authentic and universal spiritualism that can inspire the reader who now retraces those pages during the quarantine.

Over the years many artists have taught us to look at the spaces that surround us from new points of view, Giorgio Morandi, one of the protagonists of Italian painting of the twentieth century and considered among the greatest world engravers, painted his main masterpieces during the period of isolation of the Second World War. From his studio in the house in Via Fondazza, in Bologna, where he lived with his mother and three sisters Anna, Dina and Maria Teresa, Morandi painted his famous oil on canvas, where light represents the foundation of his works. The apparent simplicity of vases, bottles, bowls, flowers, landscapes is enhanced by the pictorial quality, but also by the study of lights and shadows, the result of the long observation with which the artist used to kill time. Using very few colors is one of its particular characteristics, which makes his operas poetic and surreal and, even if it did not detail its subjects, it can be seen that they don’t lose their realism.

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Marisa Merz, who in her home in Turin, Italy, urged us to look at the world with closed eyes, which for her were “extraordinarily open”, is another great artist who during the moments of forced closure at home, has embarked on new journeys within the perimeter of her room, to try to discover new fantasy maps and new vanishing points. In 1966 Merz used her home as an atelier to exhibit her works of “poor art” making the boundaries between intimate space and public place indistinct. Weaves wefts of copper and nylon threads. Then she melts small objects, such as postcards, in the white wax that acts as a protective cocoon, evoking the feeling of protection she probably felt in her room, just as we also feel protected in our homes today from the monster, from the coronavirus circulating outside.

If it is true that history is made up of occurrences and recurrences, covid-19 is only the last virus to afflict humanity. Artists, sculptors, painters and writers have witnessed the most disastrous plagues in their works. The black plague exterminated a third of the European population between 1343 and 1363. In the introductory pages to the first “Decameron” Day, Giovanni Boccaccio describes the plague epidemic that shocked Florence in 1348, a “horrid beginning” which explains why the ten storytellers meet in the church of S. Maria Novella and decide to leave the city, justifying the raison d’etre of the novels. The opening piece of the work is a grandiose scenario of the terrible plague, in which, however, a sense of astonishment amazed by the scourge prevails and the doubt remains whether the pandemic is due to divine punishment or to some evil astral influence, already anticipating the modern mentality of the centuries to come, and which still in those who do not have faith in science, as well as among some Muslim countries.

Boccaccio seems to describe our cities today when he describes not only the rapid spread of the disease, but above all when he writes that the plague has disrupted the social fabric of Florence and has upset normal relationships even in families and to dominate it is the unbridled search for profit, especially by unscrupulous individuals. Scenes that are still repeated today with the skyrocketing prices of antibacterial gels, masks and disinfectants and in many countries, unfortunately, also foodstuffs. Numerous testimonies of the seventeenth century plague, as well as the Spanish influence that between 1918 and 1919 cost to Guillalme Apollinaire, Gustav Klimt, Amedeo De Souza Cardoso, Egon Schiele and his family the life. At the end of the quarantine, sometimes even earlier thanks to internet and social networks, we will discover art in the time of the coronavirus, as the revisitation with ‘Amuchina’ and facial masks of the famous Hayez ‘Kiss’ appeared in these days in an Italian mural, in the city of Milan, one of the most affected by the COVID-19 modern pandemic.

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China's wet markets have, reportedly, started to open up. Notably, it has been suspected by the experts that the #COVID2019 virus resulting in the deaths of thousands of people across the world emerged from wild animals from the wet markets in China's Wuhan city.
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