ROYAL COLLEGE OF POOR (Albergo delle povere)
The Museum Complex of the Royal College of Poor, has been founded in 1746, on order of King Charles III, and it has been ended by his son, Ferdinand II of Borbone in 1772 to host poor, orphans, cripples and disables. In the starting project, the College was thought as a Baroque building, but, because of the long duration of the construction, it was impossible to avoid the New-classic influence just ‘’arrived’’ in Palermo, giving so life to a stylistic fusion came out from the fantasy and the skills of the ancient Sicilian workforces. At the beginning of the XIX century, the building, under the direction of Ferdinando Francesco Gravina, Prince of Palagonia, has been reserved just for a group of Nuns who took care about ills, turning it into an aid center of unlucky girls and children of Palermo. From these facts comes its name ‘’College of the Poor’’. In the first courtyard there is a rectangular map church dedicated to Holy Mary of Purification, built at the end of XVII century, too. Today belongs to the Region of Sicilia and hosts temporary exhibitions and conventions.
One of the prestigious locations of the 2nd International Biennale of Art of Palermo, will be the awesome setting of Sant’Elia Palace. The Palace has been built over the old building of the XV/ XVI century, and it’s only in 1756 that it appears as we see it now, becoming one of the most lustful palace of Palermo. After it has been in the hands of different owners, in 1984 became, after a long process of restoration, in fee of the Provincial Administration and since 2007 used for public events and exhibitions. Sant’Elia Palace is an international datum point for the important art exhibitions it hosts, as the exhibition ‘’Tsar Nicholas I Hermitage – Masterpieces in Italy’’, the anthological exhibits dedicated to Michele Catti and Milo Minnella, till the most recent personal exhibitions of Arrigo Musti and Francesco Clemente.
SAN BARTOLOMEO LODGE
The San Bartolomeo Lodge, in Vittorio Emanuele Road, is really close to the monumental ‘’Porta Felice’’, one of the doors of the city, that marks the end of the old ‘’Cassaro’’, and it was part of a hospital built in the first half of the XIII century by the San Bartolomeo Congregation. The actual configuration of this place is dated, thanks to historiography and iconography information, in 1608, year in which the Viceroy Marquise of Vigliena financed the enlargement of the building, equipping it of a nice courtyard and engraved elements on the façade. And it’s this part of the building the one arrived to us, after it has been a pavilion for ills people and a recovery for the abandoned children on the ‘’wheel of exposed’’, and after it survived to the bombs attack of the May 1943; of the old hospital remained only the two orders lodge with the prospect overlooks on the Foro Umberto I, articulated with ‘’Iesene’’ and sinuous and curved arches under a sort of a pierced banister through which it’s possible to see patch of sky. The restoration process was really accurate and hard and they’ve been financed by the City of Palermo and ended 10 years ago.
The Politeama Theatre is placed in Ruggero Settimo Square in the city center of Palermo. The entrance is made up by a triumph arch and on his top the bronze four-in-hand of Apollo, by the sculptor Mario Rutelli, sided by a couple of bronze horses by the sculptor Benedetto Civiletti.