I was reminded that I took this shot in September 2009, by a press article last week which reported the Mayor of Venice' response to art and architecture aficionados who were complaining about the advertising covering up buildings while they were being restored. A dilemma indeed, hence my title (although Doge seemed more appropriate to Mayor!)
This is part of the AFP report:
"Venice's mayor on Monday mocked critics of giant billboards that cover many of the city's historic monuments undergoing repair, following an appeal by leading international museum directors and architects.
Giorgio Orsoni, speaking in a telephone interview with AFP, advised disgruntled tourists to go home and look at photographs of famous sights such as the Bridge of Sighs or St. Mark's Square from the comfort of their own sofa.
"If people want to see the building they should go home and look at a picture of it in a book," Orsoni said.
Addressing his critics, Orsoni quoted a Venetian saying that translates as: "Before you speak, be quiet."
Growing anger over the huge, floodlit advertisements for Coca-Cola, Rolex or Bulgari that obscure palaces up and down the Grand Canal drove art world figures to publish an appeal to Venice's mayor in The Art Newspaper on Sunday.
"We ask you to imagine the disappointment that the 17.5 million visitors to Venice this year will feel," read the plea.
"They come to this iconic city with an image of it in their mind's eye and instead they see its famous views grotesquely defaced," it said.
Among the sights covered this year are the Doge's palace in St. Mark's Square, the Santa Maria della Salute basilica and the Bridge of Sighs.
Signatories of the appeal included award-winning British architect Norman Foster, as well as the directors of the Museum of Modern Art in New York, London's British Museum and the State Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg.
But Orsoni said the advertisements were necessary as they were helping to fund the renovation of buildings badly in need of repair."