From the Stone Garden

The Parrocchia San Sebastiano in Palazzolo Acreide, Sicily offers a classic example of the elegant, UNESCO recognized architectural design of the “Late Baroque Towns of the Val di Noto.” Palazzolo Acreide is one of the towns that make up the UNESCO site. The town was rebuilt after the earthquake of 1693 that flattened much of…

Grand Grammichele

Inspired by the enthroned goddess from Grammichele in Siracusa’s Museo Orsi, and after having seen photos of the town’s hexagonal piazza online, I hoped to visit in order to see the grand plaza for myself. Well, in May, our host Carmelo Cafici from nearby Licodia Eubea, guided my cousin Giulia (pictured) and me there. Built…

Ragusa’s Duomo

The Duomo di San Giorgio in Ragusa was built in the 18th century in the late baroque Sicilian style, following the historic earthquake of 1693. We’ll visit Ragusa, one of the UNESCO towns that is part of the Sicilian Late Baroque Towns of the Val di Noto, on Day 2 of our Sept. 2018 Stirring…

Chase Away the Dark

Let the fantastic monsters from Villa Palagonia (replicated on a wall down the street from the villa in Bagheria) chase dark spirits into the ether of history in order to make space for the good spirits of the New Year.  For information about New Year’s traditions in Sicily, visit my 2013 post.   

Old Woman Winter 

At the busy intersection of Corso Vittorio Emanuele and Via Maqueda, in Palermo’s historic center, sits Quattro Canti–four corners. The crossroads is flanked by four 18th century Baroque facades, each with a series of statues: At the top, the city’s patron saints prior to Santa Rosalia; in the middle, the Spanish kings of Sicily; and…