For our next day’s venture, we headed to the Chiesa di San Domenico. Our visit offered a first view of Sicilian baroque, the upside of an earthquake’s destructive force: Continue reading
In Puppet: An Essay on Uncanny Life, Kenneth Gross describes Sicilian puppeteer Mimmo Cuticchio’s L’urlo del mostro (The howl of the monster), a puppet theater based on the Odyssey. In one scene, Cuticchio
plays Odysseus himself, encountering the ghosts of puppets in the underworld, seeking his identity there among lost comrades and dead family members. Of one skeletal wooden figure he asks, in Sicilian, “Chi pupu eri?” (What puppet were you?).” Continue reading
From time to time, our friend David writes to say, “You MUST.” And so it was, when we decided to visit Palermo, that he wrote, “You MUST go to Monreale.”
Needless to say, before this, I’d not even heard of Monreale—which turns out to be a small town just outside Palermo that happens to have a stupendous Arab-Norman Cathedral. Continue reading
On New Year’s Day, we took an afternoon stroll along the Via Vittorio Emanuele. We retraced our steps, this time with the goal in mind, to the Fontana Pretoria, then strolled on to the Palermo Cathedral and the Piazza della Vittoria. As the afternoon light drew down, we strolled back to Butera 28 and made a dinner with our purchases at the market the day before. Continue reading
[T]he oldest part of the building [is] a sort of prototype for aristocratic residential buildings in the 15th century. Next to it, there was an old Franciscan convent. . . .
During the 19th century, the severe financial crisis of the Franciscan community led to the alteration of some parts of the building into houses for rent. And following the creation of the Regie Scuole Normali and the abolition of the religious orders in 1866, the building was radically changed . . . .
In 2006, after “long and demanding restoration work,” GAM opened its doors on the premises. Continue reading