Introduction to Val di Noto

The role of the religious orders in rebuilding the Val di Noto

After the tragic earthquake, the Val di Noto rose from its ashes like a phoenix to be reborn stronger and more beautiful than before.
The 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 ancient conceptions and initiating a momentous transformation.
Studies undertaken by young clerics in the rich Roman libraries, the interest in Rome, and observation of the typical architecture 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 combined the technical knowledge of local culture with the great dynamics of Roman Baroque.

Some masterpieces

A design by Vincenzo Sinatra

The Supernatural dimension of the chapel of the Santissimo Sacramento

A miniature city

The senses tell the story of the Church of Santa Chiara

San Benedetto: a treasure reopened to the public

Connections with other UNESCO sites

The colours of the cathedral

The Benedictine Monastery, one of the largest in Europe

The senses tell about Palazzo Napolino Tommasi Rosso

A long reconstruction

A majestic and luminous church

The wall comes to life

The senses tell the Mother Church of San Nicolò and of the Santissimo Salvatore

The chocolate of Modica

A triumph of colour

The Infiorata, a feast of colours and flowers

A colourful floor

The role of the religious orders in rebuilding the Val di Noto

A museum to save a tradition

Garden of Novices and the restorations by Giancarlo De Carlo

Palazzo Nicolaci di Villadorata, who is the architect?

The two churches

A symbol for the town

A Nobel Prize in Modica

The senses tell the story of the church of Santa Maria del Carmelo

A new site for a new church

Feasting in Palazzolo

A new site for a new city

Freedom of worship and the role of the Catholic Church in the diffusion of Baroque

Discovering the mother church

New roads for Catania

The Barresi-Branciforte lords

A feast only for Scicli

From the contrast of the exterior to the internal jubilation of colours

The disastrous earthquake

A new palace for the La Rocca lords

One city, three sites

The senses tell the story of the Church of San Sebastiano

The theatre of taste

The cathedral of Sant’Agata: a lengthy reconstruction

Rosario Gagliardi, the maestro of the Val di Noto

San Nicolò l’Arena: an unfinished church

One city, two sites

The senses tell the Benedictine Monastery and San NicoIò l’Arena

The Maiolica of the staircase

An eagle-shaped city

Baroque and the loss of equilibrium in the 16th century

A city in colour

The senses tell the story of the Church of Santa Chiara

The Burgos crucifix

Norman apses

Wonderful quick decorations

The character of Badia Sant’Agata

Many owners, one palace

Limestone, the colour of harmony

The kitchen, a treasure chest of colours

Militello, the story of an enlightened fiefdom

The senses tell the story of the church of San Giovanni Battista

Fontana della Ninfa Zizza, public water in the town

A small room with a golden entrance

St. Agatha and the giant candelabras

Church of San Giuliano (St. Julian) on Via dei Crociferi: reconstruction

Feast days

The senses tell about Palazzo La Rocca

Corbels: a celebration of the Nicolaci family

The interior and its masterpieces

The senses tell the story of the church of San Giuseppe

Between white and black

Some prestigious works

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

St. Sebastian, so much work!

The Staircase of Angels

Prominent façade

A square as the heart of the city

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

From International Gothic to present day

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

A hall for the feasts

The senses tell the Cathedral of Sant’Agata

Two illustrious patron saints

The senses tell the story of the Church of the Annunciation

A prominent church

The façade used as a puppet theatre

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

The Baroque town by the sea

The city of museums

The internal colours

The church of Carmine

The Feast of San Giacomo (St. James)

The senses tell the story of the Church of San Benedetto

A new entrance for Santa Chiara (St. Claire)

The senses tell about Palazzo Nicolaci

Searching for colour

Places of knowledge: the Benedictines’ library

A half-Baroque church

From St. Thomas to St. Joseph

Modica, a city with ancient origins

A talking palace