Sicilian Walls: Fine Art?


January 17, 2013

The walls here are spattered and dripping with great splotches of color. Canvases of abstract expressionism.

I’ll tell you something: studying these walls is as much fun for me as visiting a museum-ful of Rothkos, Motherwells, and Pollocks.

Che ne pensi? Whaddaya think? Are these walls in urgent need of repair? Or are they A-OK just the way they are?

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43 comments to Sicilian Walls: Fine Art?

  • Yes! Rothko! So beautiful and inspiring – makes me want to do that to my bedroom walls but it would never be the same!

  • Jann, I love that your imagination and creativity allows you to see the beauty in everything around you. It’s a rare and beautiful quality! I think these gorgeous walls should stay just the way they are! They are beautiful and I wish the walls in my home looked half this good! ha! 🙂

    • Jann

      Thank you Bella. Hmmm, I’ve never really thought of myself that way… And about inside walls–are yours in the early stages of decay? xxxxxxxxxx

  • —Repair?
    NO No No
    that’s like taking a Picasso and spittting on it!

    Jann, this better not be going into SPAM. Damn. xxxxxxxx

    • Jann

      Whenever I see anyone repairing walls from now on, I’m going to quote from you, Kim!

      And now that I have “un-spammed” you, let’s hope there’s no further problem. (I cannot believe how bad my spam-catcher is!! That they would dare to spam YOU! Grrrr. )

  • They are masterpieces! Thank you for curating them.

  • I love the old walls in our village too. I have not been to Sicily…yet.

  • I couldn’t agree with you more! I call it ‘fresco’ painting over time eternity! And it’s an inspiration for my initial phase of my art pieces. BELLISSIMO AFFRESCOS

  • Cathy

    I agree with Ron, “art is everywhere” and Jann you are an expert in finding it! Beautiful pics, colors pure Italian… I love the character of the old buildings, slowly aging as if human. But then the practical side of me wonders, what becomes of the structure if its not fixed, maintained?

    Hope all is well with you xoxo

    • Jann

      Hiya Cathy–great to hear from you. You have a point about the structure of buildings and walls…. wouldn’t want them to entirely collapse, so I guess repairs are inevitable. Where are you now in your virtual tour of Italy???

  • I so totally love old walls. Many are living history, walls as art and your photos of them, superb as always. Thanks, Jann.

  • vicki carol

    I had trouble getting to your site last week, but what a nice beginning to this one with your abstract art. It is an age old question, leave the evidence of history or clean up and be in the present. I like your idea to preserve through the human eye, not necessarily the whole but in the abstract.What fun you have every day.

  • I agree with you. I have lived in Rome for many years (now in Umbria) and have watched the beautiful old walls being “restored” and gentrified with tasteful pastels. I hope they keep the beautiful ones in Sicily (I saw many in Palermo) a while longer…
    I really enjoy your blog and photos!

    • Jann

      Ciao Patricia–welcome to the blog. So glad you stopped by. How I love your Umbria–it is decidedly tidier than the South. But the decay in Sicily has a distinct beauty of its own (not so much the garbage on the sides of some roads, though).

  • Oh what beautiful works of art and life x
    I’m with you I love the layers of time and color,
    ciao lisa x

  • Perfect just the way they are Jann. As you know, I’m right with you when it comes to random moments of life imitating art on Italian streets!! 😉 I especially love the second one with the inscription. The composition is perfect – which is you I know! xx

  • ooops, Italy or Sicily? I realise I’m not sure if they’re separate countries or if Sicily is a state within Italy. Apologies in advance if this the ultimate insult 🙂

    • Jann

      You’re right–Sicily is an autonomous region of Italy, though if you meet a Sicilian outside of Italy, she’ll probably refer to herself as Sicilian rather than Italian.

  • Wow, they are fabulous. A-OK and much more. I think of Italy as one of those cultures in which rusticity, imperfection or brokenness can be as much a source of beauty as any other. Brava!

  • c woodyard

    Love them all..

  • Sandee wheeler

    I think some of the walls look beautiful and some of them look like a bit of a mess!

  • Never change a thing. Reading the walls is a great way to practice the italian language. Observing all the color changes gives me a glimpse into the colorful lives of the italian people. Change not a thing.

    • Jann

      Mmm–I love your language-learning idea, Rosann. Just read the walls. You sound like me: don’t change one thing about Italy (except maybe the political scene). I get upset when something gets “modernized” or “developed.”

  • Sam

    If I squint my eyes, and tilt my head to the right, I think I can see a miraculous ghostly image of Silvio Berlusconi in that last photo.

    • Jann

      Is he that pink blob in the upper left, Sam? If this is the case, I think this particular wall should be re-plastered.

  • cemal karahan

    I wonder if some Sicilian people also wrote and drew onto the inner or outer walls of some places of history like churches and chapels. If so, this is a pity and shame ’cause this brutal behavior was once experienced in Turkey, unfortunately…! Nice pastel colors you discovered. Thanks Jann for your keen observation of the things most people are not aware at all….!

    • Jann

      Hmmm. Good question, Cemal, about graffiti on churches and chapels in Sicily. I’m not sure. I don’t see any graffiti on churches, but there’s plenty elsewhere. Of course Italians invented the word, and there is writing all over the walls in ancient Pompeii.

  • Ron

    beautiful colors, art is everywhere. Thanks Jann

  • Don Modaro

    Jann, sono belle così come sono. Grazie.

  • Joyce LaGow

    Wonderful! I love the colors!

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