the mosaic cycle
The Palatine Chapel

The senses tell the mosaic cycle

sight
A burst of colours and gold: the mosaics

The craftsmen, probably from Byzantium, created a domus, in which the shining gold of the tiles becomes an allegory of the glorious reign of Roger. The representations, in an immobile and unnatural style, narrate timeless scenes from the Old and New Testaments in a burst of gold and bright colours. The King of Kings, Christ, the centrepiece of the entire mosaic cycle, can be admired several times: blessing and within a tone in the dome; stern and half-length in the central apse; in majesty between Saints Peter and Paul in the part above the royal throne and in the space in front of the apsidiole dedicated to Saint Paul. Even the Norman sovereigns could admire and enjoy the splendour of the mosaic cycle from the royal throne, aimed at glorifying Christ and the King.

touch
The throne: the symbol of the king

Become part of the scene depicted in the mosaic for a moment: you can touch the tiles that make up the royal throne, the symbol of the king’s magnificence and the place reserved for sovereigns. Touching the fruit of the skilful work of the mosaic artists from the East can give you an idea of the consistency of the materials used for this precious construction that manifests royal power.

smell
Candles: the divine light

The smell of wax spreads through the sacred area of the apse. The candles occupy a place in the central apse, near and on the altar, and are a symbol of the Light of God. In the Palatine Chapel, the precious Easter candle, which represents Jesus Light of the World, is also lit during Easter time.

The decorations on the bell tower

The senses tell the historical context

An architectural crescendo

The senses tell restorations

The ancient convent of the Martorana, a history of devotion and tradition

The senses tell the architecture and decorations

The interior of the church

The Norman conquest of Sicily and the birth of a new Latin kingdom

The senses tell the ceiling

From oblivion to the recovery of memory

The mosaics of the naves

The beautiful Zisa and its garden: solacium regi among sounds, colours and scents

The senses tell the historical context

The mosaics of the transept and the apses

The senses tell the flooring

the roof of Paradise: one of the most representative works of medieval art

The senses tell the architecture

The Admiral’s dedication

The senses tell baroque decoration

Restorations

The mosaic cycle, an ascending path towards the light

The architectural envelope: the Greek cross layout oriented towards the light

The Royal Throne

The return of water

The birth of the Norman kingdom

From earthquake to collapse

The senses tell the mosaic cycle

The rediscovered palace

The architectural appearance and transformations over time

The loca solatiorum: dwellings for recreation, well-being and hunting

The senses tell the external architecture and the original layout

Different styles and transformations of “one of the most beautiful monuments in the world”

The flooring: shapes, motifs and iconography

A building constructed in a short space of time

The senses tell the historical context

The Palace of Kings

Gold and light: the splendour of the mosaics in the Royal Chapel

The opus sectile floor of the Palatine Chapel

The Cassaro

Decorations

The Genoard Park, the garden of pleasures and wonders

Saint Peter’s Chapel in the Royal Palace

The senses tell the interior

the Baroque exterior

Shapes and colours of the wooden ceiling

The senses tell the Zisa over the centuries

the Baroque interior

Intertwining of knowledge in Norman Palermo

The architectural space