Renaissance bagpiper

Renaissance Nativity in Matera

Christmas is such a wonderful time of the year. (I think that’s from a song…) Commercial enterprises have certainly made the most of it, perhaps one could say, even exploited that “feeling.” But that’s because there really is a specialness to the season, and when I laid eyes on the beautiful Renaissance nativity in Matera, I knew that it had …

contemporary sculpture

Contemporary Sculptures of Edoardo Tresoldi in Calabria

Calabria is synonymous with spectacular landscapes and outstanding cuisine. Visitors flock to the region in the toe of the Italian boot for its beautiful beaches and even to visit the Riace Bronzes, expecting to soak up a bit of ancient culture along with a few rays and a lot of great food. But contemporary art? Yes, you can catch that, …

castle in Calabria

Fiumefreddo Bruzio, Picturesque Calabrian Village Between Mountains and Sea

Fiumefreddo Bruzio boasts a panorama that stretches from Sicily’s Aeolian Islands along Calabria’s Tyrrhenian coastline in the Province of Cosenza all the way to the mountains of the Cilento in Campania. The medieval old town was established for its strategic position, and today’s visitors can choose from numerous cliffside terraces from which to enjoy the beautiful Southern Italian views.

Salvador Dalí in Matera

Salvador Dalí in Matera, Old and New in South Italy

Visitors to Matera in recent years can’t help but have noticed the oversized Dalí sculptures strategically placed throughout the historic center. The contrast between the artist’s provocative surrealism and the old-world setting, extraordinary in itself, cries out for attention in a very contemporary way. Look at me! Take a selfie! Who would have expected to see Salvador Dalí in Matera?

Bronzi di Riace: 50th Anniversary of the Discovery of the Riace Bronzes

Walking on a sandy beach, most of us don’t have much more hope than of spotting a decent seashell. There are those who hunt for treasures, armed with metal detectors on land, simple goggles in shallow water and elaborate equipment further out to sea. Very few ever find anything of value, but those who do, keep the dream alive, such …

Palazzo della Cultura, Fata Morgana

The Fata Morgana, Elusive Phenomenon in the Strait of Messina

“I have never beheld the enchantment of the Straits of Messina, that Fata Morgana, when, under certain conditions of weather, phantasmagoric palaces of wondrous shape are cast upon the waters – not mirrored, but standing upright; tangible, as it were; yet diaphanous as a veil of gauze.” Thus spake Norman Douglas in his Old Calabria. The extraordinary vision, looking across …

acrolith sculpture

Apollo of Krimisa, Acrolith Sculpture in Italy

Modern man has the tendency to think of himself as more evolved and cleverer than his predecessors, but things aren’t always what they seem. Perusing the pages of history books and visiting museums can lend a bit of perspective with regard to ingenuity over the ages. Take ancient acrolith sculpture, of which several noteworthy examples still exist, amongst them, the …

Italian fisherman

The Murals of Diamante, An Engaging Stroll by the Sea

These past months have been difficult for everyone and particularly challenging for Italy. First small towns, then larger areas, museums, organized events and the whole country shut down. It got me to thinking about how resilient Italy, its villages and its cities have been, how Italians have come back time and time again after catastrophes of varying natures and proportions. …