Introduction to Val di Noto

The beginning of an authentic Baroque conception

Every desire for renewal hides a period of transition. Continuity and innovation interacted in Sicily, only reaching the most eloquent and authentic expression of Baroque in the late 1670s.
The widespread commitment of the religious orders to educate a modern generation of artists in the cultural and artistic knowledge of Baroque Rome was crucial in overcoming Late Renaissance notions still present in Sicilian architecture from the first half of the century.
Studies undertaken by young clerics in the rich Roman libraries and, above all, the interest that arose in Rome, the observation of the architectural characteristics of the Counter-Reformation, gave rise to a synthesis of figurative elements which set Sicilian Baroque in motion.
In Sicily, Roman artistic influences replaced Spanish cultural dependence.
By the hand of specialised workers, the new spirit of the era was inaugurated, not only in religious architecture but also in civic buildings, too.
Sicilian Baroque translated the positive synthesis between the technical knowledge of local culture and the monumental dynamics of continental Baroque.

Reconstruction after the earthquake

A Nobel Prize in Modica

San Domenico and Gagliardi’s work

The church and the monastery

Piazza Duomo, the elephant fountain, the heart of the city

Baroque and the loss of balance in the 16th century

Altars, saints and sculptural works

The two churches

The freedom of worship and the Catholic Church’s role in the diffusion of Baroque

A unifying project for the city of Catania

The senses tell the Church of San Domenico

A compromise between Neoclassicism and Baroque

Baroque creativity: recurring themes

Rebirth and urban planning of the city of Noto

Fountain of the Nymph Zizza: public water in the town

The Madonna dei Conadomini and the art of devotion

The senses tell about Palazzo Zacco

A new site for the church of San Giorgio

Expanded spaces, stucco and colourful lights

The Church of St. Francis

The senses tell the story of the Church of Santa Maria del Monte

Religious architecture

Madonna of the Militia: a singular warrior virgin

St. Agatha and the candelore

Palazzo Trigona: a building with a complex shape

The smallest Greek theatre in the world

The Duomo di San Giorgio (Cathedral of St. George)

The triumph of Baroque: expansion of spaces

Garden of Novices and the restorations by Giancarlo De Carlo

The Antonino Uccello Birthplace Museum

The Franciscan convent

The senses tell the story of the Church of San Paolo

The articulated interior spaces

The Church of St. Paul

Unusual iconographies: the Burgos crucifix

Akrai and Syracuse: an unbreakable bond

The Church of St. Julian on Via dei Crociferi

The works in the church

The Church of Madonna della Stella

The senses tell the story of the Sanctuary Church of Santa Maria della Stella

Palazzo Zacco, a balance between sobriety and decoration

A story of rebirth

The senses tell about Palazzo Ducezio

From the end of the world to rebirth from the rubble

A stone garden

The senses tell the story of the Church of San Benedetto

One city, three sites

The Church of St. Mary of the Mountain

The Infiorata of Noto, a modern tradition

The Church of St. Benedict

The interior of the church: space and colour

The art of maiolica

The neo-Gothic seminary chapel: symbols, light and space

The senses tell the story of the Church of San Giuliano ai Crociferi

The senses tell the Benedictine Monastery and the Church of San Nicolò l’Arena

The Monte delle Prestanze in the new city layout

The senses tell the story of the Church of San Giovanni Evangelista

The Badia di Sant’Agata (St. Agatha’s Abbey)

Militello: The story of an enlightened fiefdom

The church and the college

The expansion of space and changing reality

The city within the city

Scenography, lights and colours of the cathedral

The dynamics of the Church of San Michele

The Church of St. John the Evangelist

The senses tell of the Cathedral of San Pietro

The Benedictines’ library

Scicli, the city of Baroque scenery

The new roads of the city

The senses tell about Palazzo Trigona

The Palazzo dei due mori

The church of San Nicolò l’Arena: the majesty of an unfinished beauty

The senses tell the Cathedral of Sant’Agata

Verticality and dynamism of the façade of the Church of San Carlo

The senses tell the story of the Church of the Badia di Sant’Agata

Expansion, spatiality and light in the church of San Domenico

The interiors: diffused light and Byzantine relics

The beginning of an authentic Baroque conception

The senses tell of Palazzo della Cancelleria

Views denied, views conquered: the power of the devout Benedictines

The illusion of light and the decorative splendour

The senses tell the story of the Church of San Carlo and the former Jesuit college

The city of Modica, a balance between nature and urbanism

Scenography and devotion for St. Agatha

The senses tell the Church of San Michele

The interior and works of art

Palazzo della Cancelleria: from former stable to the Nicastro family

The senses tell the Cathedral of San Giorgio

The Staircase of Angels

Virtuosity, decorations and altars

The Monastery of the Benedictine nuns

The casket of austerity under the great dome

The senses tell the Cathedral of San Giorgio

Geometry and wonder in civic architecture in the Baroque of the Val di Noto

The palace, the town, the church

The senses tell about Palazzo Beneventano

The eagle-shaped city

Palazzo Trigona di Canicarao

Majestic exteriors, grandiose interiors

Luminous sacred spaces

The city palace

City and nature

Barresi-Branciforte: the lords of the fiefdom and the modernisation of the town

A heritage of votive works

Art in the cathedral

A casket of precious works