Matteo turned around and began to count: "One, two, three... ready or not, here I come." A clatter and then silence... now he had to look for all the children he had only met a few times since he arrived in Pescia for the summer holidays. Twilight painted the tired stones black as they slept on the steep slope. He saw an arc and nearby an austere window. He gathered his courage and poked his curly little head thorough the door. There was darkness. A faint light could be seen in the distance. "Anybody here?" He shouted. The air stood still as he saw different shapes of the human form come to life in the shadows. "Giacomo, is that you? You're not funny!" A little voice in the dark laughed. "Who is it?" asked Matteo "My name is Dorotea and I live here" "But which of these ghosts are you? Come out!" "Ghosts, ha, ha, ha ... These are statues!" Dorothy said. "Impossible, statues are made of bronze... these are white!" Dorotea laughed loudly, "because they’re made from plaster and there isn’t much light in here!”
"Matteo, these are the plaster statues of Libero Andreotti. You do know where you are, don’t you?" "No, Dorotea!" "You're in Palagio, one of the most beautiful palazzos in all of Pescia! The mayor used to live here… let’s say in 1424, then it was a prison, a Montepio bank, a public school, a barracks, an arsenal, a theatre... It’s been here since the 13th century and was restored and returned to the community 45 years ago."
"And all these ghos... sorry! Statues? Who did you say they were by, Dorotea?" "By Libero Andreotti, a Pescia local in 1875 who dedicated his life to working as a painter, illustrator, caricaturist and ceramic decorator. Then at age 31, he went to Milan and specialised in sculpting statues.
"Amazing Dorotea! Just think, I visit my grandmother every year in Pescia and I’ve never seen this palazzo!" "Matteo, in Pescia, every corner is a part of history! Many famous people have been through here. Come, I'll show you the palazzo’s ground floor. Here you can see the plasters sculpted by Libero Andreotti for the Fallen of Milan and Bolzano. The collection comes entirely from the artist's studio in Florence. The first floor, used for temporary exhibitions and also for conferences, allows the gypsothèque to explore a cultural activity that’s varied in time and content."
"But Dorotea, where do you live?" "Matteo, Matteo, where are you? All we did was hide, the rest is up to you!" "I’m coming!" Another voice, this time deeper and more hoarse called to Matteo again: "Eh you! What are you doing here? Get out! The palazzo is closed!" It was the angry warden who scolded the child. "Bye Dorotea!" But no one waved back. "Run along now, there’s no one here" insisted the warden. "But there is! There's a girl!" The warden turned on the light: "Look there is no one here son, only plaster statues and dust!" Matteo felt a chill run down his spine and said, "yes these are statues, but where is Dorotea?"