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Catania Intro (Lockdown mode)

Lockdown tour in lovely baroque Catania on the east coast of Sicily. Also called “the Milan of the south” due to its clubs, bars and restaurants. Dancer in the video is Sal Saccullo with student.

Walking from Corso Umberto – Via Etnea – down to Piazza Duomo. We are in lockdown mode 2.0 now, allowed only to be in the municipality which are quite small in Sicily compared to e.g. Sweden.

Svenska

Lockdown-tur i härliga barock Catania på Siciliens östkust.
Kallas också “söderns Milano” på grund av dess klubbar, barer och restauranger. Dansaren i videon är Sal Saccullo med student.

Går från Corso Umberto – Via Etnea – ner till Piazza Duomo. Vi är i lockdown 2.0 nu, får bara vara i kommunen som ofta är ganska små på Sicilien jämfört med t.ex. Sverige.

Baroque Sicily – Ragusa Ibla

Ragusa Ibla is one of the most beautiful areas in Sicily. A small baroque town built after the most devastating earthquake in Sicilian history 1693. Ragusa Ibla became famous after TV-series “Commissarie Montalbano” and has in short time developed from an almost abandoned area to a “place to see” in Sicily. It is also part of the so called Baroque Trail that goes all the way to Syracuse covering the most important baroque sites on the island.

Became part of Unesco Heritage 2002. Surrounded by the Iblea mountains gives a flourish green area with the typical limestone, used also in construction. Great areas for trekking.

Svenska

Ragusa Ibla är en av de vackraste områdena på Sicilien. En liten barockstad byggd efter den mest förödande jordbävningen i Siciliansk historia 1693.
Ragusa Ibla blev känd efter TV-serien “Commissarie Montalbano” och har på kort tid utvecklats från ett nästan övergivet område till en “plats att se” på Sicilien. Är också en del av den så kallade “Barockleden” som går hela vägen till Sirakusa och täcker de viktigaste barockplatserna på ön. Blev en del av Unescos världsarvslista 2002.

Omgiven av Iblea-bergen ger ett blomstrande grönt område med den typiska kalkstenen, som också används i byggandet. Fantastiska områden för vandring.

The Sicilian baroque wonder

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Can highly recommend a tour in one of the Sicilian baroque wonders, the Biscari Palace in Catania. Today was offered an exclusive tour guided by the prince himself, Principe Ruggero Moncada. The prince has a beef with us Swedes as his wife almost ran away with a Swedish man once.
The palace attracted many famous writers like Goethe and Brydone. One the painting you can see the Princess with a hole in her stomach. This happened cause during WW2 the big dancing sala was used as a tennis court by soldiers, and the accident happened. The family decided not to repair the damage as it became part of the history.
The part that I Iove the most is the baroque stairs by the ball room. The palace was finished 1763. Sadly it is quite run down, but it is privately held and just to repair one Murano chandelier costs ?12,000.

I’ve been here couple of times for masquerades and other events, but for a tour it was the first time. Una meraviglia!

More photos after the Swedish text

Svenska

Kan starkt rekommendera en rundtur i ett av de sicilianska barockens underverk, Biscari-palatset i Catania. Idag erbj?ds en exklusiv turn? guidad av prinsen sj?lv, Principe Ruggero Moncada. Prinsen har liten gnabb med oss svenskar eftersom hans fru n?stan smet iv?g med en svensk man en g?ng.
Palatset lockade m?nga k?nda f?rfattare som Goethe och Brydone. I en m?lning kan du se prinsessan med ett h?l i magen. Detta h?nde under andra v?rldskriget d? den stora danssalen anv?ndes som tennisbana av soldater, och olyckan intr?ffade. Familjen beslutade att inte reparera skadan eftersom den blev en del av historien.
Den del som jag gillar mest ?r barocktrappan vid danssalen. Palatset blev f?rdigt 1763. Tyv?rr ?r det ganska slitet, men det ?r privat?gt och bara f?r att reparera en Murano-ljuskrona kostar ?12 000.

Jag har varit h?r n?gra g?nger f?r maskerader och andra evenemang, men f?r en turn? var det f?rsta g?ngen. Una meraviglia!

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Syracuse – the beauty of Piazza Duomo

One of the most beautiful baroque piazzas in Italy is Piazza Duomo in Ortigia, Syracuse. A rectangular piazza surrounded by flamboyant palaces.? Here you find the extraordinary main church and the church of Santa Lucia, which is important for us Swedes.

The main church of Ortigia has not much left from the Greek era than couple of Doric columns in the facade, but is worth a visit. It’s dedicated to Athena and is part of the UNESCO heritage list. Usually when you seen one baroque church, you have seen them all, but this main church is very different. Its style is mainly Baroque and Rococo on the outside, inside has parts dating back to the Siceliot epoch, and parts dating back to medieval times, built by the Normans and thus left until the present day. Its internal structure is composed of several naves and chapels, which have a classic and decorated style, typical of the Baroque too. The site of the church dates back as far as year 700 B.C, but the church was complete 1753.

By the main church is the Chiesa di Santa Lucia alla Badia, an important church for us Swedes as we celebrate Saint Lucia the same time as in Sicily. Here you find the original masterpiece from Caravaggio, Il seppellimento di Santa Lucia (Burial of St Lucy). It’s painted in Syracuse between 1608 and 1609.

Svenska

En av de vackraste barock piazzorna i Italien ?r Piazza Duomo i Ortigia, Sirakusa. En rektangul?r piazza omgiven av flambojanta palats. H?r hittar du den extraordin?ra huvudkyrkan och kyrkan Santa Lucia, vilken ?r viktig f?r oss svenskar.

Ortigias huvudkyrka har inte mycket kvar fr?n den grekiska eran ?n n?gra doriska kolonner i fasaden, men ?r v?rt ett bes?k. Den ?r till?gnad Athena och ing?r i UNESCOs v?rldsarvslista. Vanligtvis n?r man sett en barockkyrka har man sett dem alla, men den h?r huvudkyrkan ?r v?ldigt annorlunda. Dess stil ?r fr?mst barock och rokoko p? utsidan, inuti delar som g?r tillbaka till Siceliotiden och delar som g?r tillbaka till medeltiden, byggda av normannerna och d?rmed kvar tills idag. Dess interna struktur best?r av flera navar och kapeller, som har en klassisk och dekorerad stil, som ?r typisk f?r barocken. Kyrkans plats dateras s? l?ngt som ?r 700 B.C, men nuvarande kyrkan var f?rdig 1753.

Vid huvudkyrkan finns Chiesa di Santa Lucia alla Badia, en viktig kyrka f?r oss svenskar d? vi firar Santa Lucia samtidigt som p? Sicilien. H?r hittar du det ursprungliga m?sterverket fr?n Caravaggio, Il seppellimento di Santa Lucia (Begravningen av Santa Lucia). Den m?lades i Sirakusa mellan 1608 och 1609.

It’s Carnival time!

This year we attended the Carnival party at Palazzo Manganelli in Catania. Nice music, pasta buffet and an ok bar.

Palace is built by the Tornabene family in 1400, but then have had several owners. The Palace was restored and enlarged in the second half of the nineteenth century with the addition of the second floor (where today is a great hotel), the interiors were richly redecorated in the style of the time according to new architectural concepts, where worked the famous painter Giuseppe Sciuti, all work ordered by Princess Angela Patern? of Manganelli Torresi. Currently the palace has a fa?ade in pure late baroque/ rococo style and with a hanging garden. Very famous in Catania, extended on two levels joined by a romantic staircase with two fountains and a nymphaeum. It is currently owned by descendants Borghese princes, renting it for events.

As usual the party got interrupted by the police sometime after midnight due to administrative irregularities, but that is typical in Sicily so…

Svenska

I ?r deltog vi i karnevalfesten i Palatset Manganelli i Catania. Trevlig musik, pastabuff? och en ok bar.

Slottet ?r byggt av familjen Tornabene ?r 1400, men har sedan haft flera ?gare. Slottet restaurerades och byggdes ut under andra h?lften av artonhundratalet med till?gg av andra v?ningen (d?r det idag ?r ett hotell), inredningen var rikt inredd tidsenligt i nya arkitektoniska begrepp, d?r arbetade bland annat k?nda m?laren Giuseppe Sciuti, allt arbete best?llt av prinsessan Angela Patern? fr?n Manganelli Torresi. F?r tillf?llet har slottet en fasad i ren senbarock/ rokoko stil och med en h?ngande tr?dg?rd. Mycket k?nd i Catania, byggd p? tv? niv?er f?renade med en romantisk trappa med tv? font?ner och en nymphaeum. Det ?gs f?r n?rvarande av ?ttlingar, Borghese prinsar, som hyr det f?r event.

Som vanligt avbr?ts festen av polisen n?gon g?ng efter midnatt p? grund av administrativa oegentligheter, men det ?r typiskt p? Sicilien, s? …

Video of the early evening / Video fr?n tidig kv?ll

 

Pit Stop Trapani

Trapani is a quite well known coast town on the west side of Sicily. Had a huge tourism boom when the airport was made a Ryanair airport, but now struggling to keep the numbers up. Trapani is not my favourite city, but the old town is really worth a visit. Beautiful baroque style with nice shops, wine bars and traffic free zones. Park the car in front of the harbor and walk the few minutes in. In Trapani you should eat the classical couscous with fish soup. The city is also well located between two important wine districts, Alcamo and Marsala. I would recommend to book a stay on the countryside of Trapani. We visited just couple of hours to eat after a wine tour.

Svenska

Trapani ?r en ganska k?nd kuststad p? v?stra sidan av Sicilien. Hade en enorm turismboom n?r flygplatsen gjordes till en Ryanair flygplats, men k?mpar nu f?r att h?lla siffrorna uppe. Trapani ?r inte min favoritstad, men gamla stan ?r verkligen v?rt ett bes?k. Vacker barockstil med fina aff?rer, vinbarer och trafikfria zoner. Parkera bilen framf?r hamnen och g? de f? minuterna in. I Trapani borde du ?ta den klassiska couscousen med fisksoppa. Staden ligger ocks? bra till mellan tv? viktiga vinomr?den, Alcamo och Marsala. Jag rekommenderar att boka boendet p? landsbygden utanf?r Trapani. Vi stannade bara ett par timmar f?r middag efter en vintur.

We decided to stop by a wine bar and take in local Focaccia and Tagliere (cheese and chark).

Vi stannade till vid en vinbar och tog in en lokal Focaccia och Tagliere (ost och chark)

 

Quattro Canti

Quattro Canti in Palermo is also known as Piazza Vigliena, built between 1608-1620 in Baroque style. The piazza has four sidea, a form of a octagonal with four streets crossing. The four facades are identical and has fountains and statues of the four seasons, four Spanish kings of Sicily and four patronesses of Palermo.

Svenska

Quattro Canti i Palermo ?r ocks? k?nd som Piazza Vigliena, byggd mellan 1608-1620 i barockstil. Piazzan har fyra sidor, ?ttkantig form med fyra gator som korsar. De fyra fasaderna ?r identiska och har font?ner och statyer av de fyra ?rstiderna, fyra spanska kungarna p? Sicilien och fyra beskyddarinnorna av Palermo.

Views in Castiglione di Sicilia

My work takes me all over Sicily and we were visiting one of my favourite towns, Castiglione di Sicilia. Castiglione is also the oldest wine town in Sicily and located by the wine and nut district. Here we were checking the allotment and how to organize the bus to come through for art groups coming to Sicily. Sadly for a cloudy day you can not see tha usual amazing view to Etna.

Svenska

Mitt arbete tar mig runt Sicilien och vi bes?kte en av mina favoritst?der, Castiglione di Sicilia. Castiglione ?r ocks? den ?ldsta vinstaden p? Sicilien och ligger vid vin- och n?tdistriktet. H?r kontrollerade vi boendet och hur organisera s? att bussen kan komma igenom sm? gr?nderna f?r konstgrupper som kommer till Sicilien. Tyv?rr var det en molnig dag och vi kunde inte se den vanligtvis fantastiska utsikten mot Etna.

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Visit Catania – The Monastry of “Benedettini”

This is one of the most powerful places to visit in Catania. Impressive construction by tons of stone that created the Benedettini Monastry and church. It has been closed for many years, but now open daily from 9am to 5pm. You find it at Piazza Dante, just a 15 minute walk from Via Etna (central baroque shopping street). It is protected by UNESCO as here you find unique cloisters, roman style house, roof garden, impressive architecture in late sicilian baroque style and detailed stone handy craft. Take the guided tour, it is just couple of euros.

Svenska

Detta ?r en av de mest kraftfulla platserna att bes?ka i Catania. Imponerande konstruktion av ton av sten som skapade Benedettini Monastry och kyrkan. Den har varit st?ngd i m?nga ?r, men nu ?ppen dagligen fr?n 9:00 till 17:00. Du hittar den p? Piazza Dante, bara 15 minuters promenad fr?n Via Etna (centrala barock shoppinggatan). Skyddad av UNESCO d?r du finner unikt kloster, typiskt romerskt hus, taktr?dg?rd, imponerande arkitektur i sen siciliansk barockstil och detaljerad stenhantverk. Ta g?rna den guidad rundturen, det kostar bara n?gra euro.

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Building started year 1500 and was planned to be the largest monastry in Europe. The Monastry has been destroyed several times due to natural causes; lava eruption 1669 and Sicily’s worst earthquake 1693. The reconstruction started 1702 and many monks moved here. The reconstruction was following the original plan for the monastry and finally became the largest in Europe.


Byggandet startade ?r 1500 och var planerad att bli det st?rsta monastriet i Europa. Monastriet har f?rst?rts flera g?nger p? grund av naturliga orsaker; lava utbrott 1669 och Siciliens v?rsta jordb?vning 1693. Rekonstruktionen b?rjade 1702 och m?nga munkar flyttade hit. Rekonstruktionen f?ljde den ursprungliga planen f?r monastriet och blev ?ntligen den st?rsta i Europa.

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Every second sunday each month you can also enjoy a visit to an organic market held in the Benedettini gardens. Open 9:30 am to 1:30pm. Only local organic produce; vegetables, fruits, beauty products, vine, tea, beer, cheeses and much more.


Den andra s?ndagen varje m?nad kan du ocks? njuta av ett bes?k p? ekologisk marknaden som h?lls i Benedettini-tr?dg?rden. ?ppen 9:30 till 1:30. Endast lokala ekologiska praodukter; gr?nsaker, frukt, sk?nhetsprodukter, vin, te, ?l, ost och mycket mer.

 

Webiste: The Benedictine Monastery of Catania

The Cathedral where the dome collapsed

The cathedral of Noto, San Nicolo, is one of the most beautiful churches in Sicily. Built in baroque style with light colors. The construction started 1694 och was finished 1703. The earthquake in december 1990 caused some structural damages, but the cathedral was restored. Due to defects in the restoring work the dome collapsed march 1996. The right pillar that supported the dome weakened and started to crumble because during restoring the earthquake damages, wrong material was used for the pillars to support the dome. Instead of blocks of stone the pillars were filled with sacks contaning river stones that caused weakness to hold the dome. Fortunately there were no victims, because the church was not open to the public that time.

Svenska

Katedralen i Noto, San Nicolo, ?r en av de vackraste kyrkorna p? Sicilien. Byggd i barockstil med ljusa f?rger. Konstruktionen startade 1694 och blev f?rdig 1703. Jordb?vningen i december 1990 orsakade vissa strukturella skador men katedralen ?terst?lldes. P? grund av brister i ?terst?llningsarbetet rasade kupolen mars 1996. Den h?gra pelaren som st?dde kupolen f?rsvagades och b?rjade smulas s?nder pga att under reparationen av jordb?vningsskadorna anv?ndes fel material f?r att pelarna skulle kunna st?dja kupolen. I st?llet f?r stenblock fylldes pelarna med s?ckar av flodstenar som orsakade svaghet f?r att h?lla kupolen. Lyckligtvis drabbades ingen f?r kyrkan var inte ?ppen f?r allm?nheten den tiden.

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The facade has typical “two side towers” from the baroque era which can also be found on the church of Versailles and similar engravings of the Saint Roch church in Paris.

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Fasaden har “tv? sidotorn” typiska fr?n barocktiden, som ?ven finns p? Versailles kyrka och liknande gravyr i Saint Roch-kyrkan i Paris.

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