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Turin: yesterday, today and tomorrow

Daring architectural choices, futuristic projects, huge spaces for the exhibitions. Turin has been changing since the beginning of the 1990s then the Olimpic Games of 2006speeded it up. 

 The premises were all there: the solemn Sabaudian architecture, the grandeur of a former political capital, the accuracy of the intellectual core, the wing of Alps, the proximity to the charming Langhe and the desire to discover new things. And that was: it is nice walking around the town on the “sanpietrini” (type of pavement) where Cavour used to meditate, Gramsci developed his political theory and Nietzche showed his first signs of insanity.

The present perfectly matches to the past on the urban tapestry where Piazza Castello stands out, where centuries of history show their majesty, the Madama Palace – back to its splendour after eighteen years of restyling – and the Royal Palace, so straight outside and so rich inside featuring the splendour of the ancient Courtly life. Not far there is San Carlo Square. Rather than a square it is a delicious glass of champagne to be sipped calmly in order to taste all its components and the way they come together. It is the “sitting room” of the town, a baroque stage surrounded by two
arcades full of historical cafés. You’ll experience a multimedia trip in the Mole Antonelliana: this peculiar landmark, that stands out in the town’s skyline, is the symbol of the seventh art since it is the seat of the National Museum of Cinema, the most charming, interesting and interactive of all the museums of Turin.

Another collection that cannot be missed is the Egyptian Museum, the most important in the world after the one from Cairo. Contemporary Art is exhibited at the GAM – Modern and Contemporary Civic Gallery – featuring 45.000 works of art that include paintings and sculptures from the XVIIIth century to the present time as well as the 40 rooms of the Contemporary Art Museum in the Rivoli Castle. The National Automobile Museum can’t be missed too, it is one of the oldest automobile museums in the world, a true magnet for amateurs.

An esoteric atmosphere also represents a particular feature of this town where energy waves cross the surface of the planet: the belief that this town is the protagonist of the perpetual struggle between good and evil comes from there. If you fancy visiting Turin under a protective wing, you’ll visit two “positive” places first: the church of the Great Mother of God, beyond Vittorio Emanuele’s bridge and the fountain of the Four Seasons. It is told that the church was built on a site where in ancient times there was a temple dedicated to the Egyptian Goddess Isis while one of the statues
before the church – the allegory of Faith raising a stem glass in her fist – is where the Holy Grail is hidden, the stem glass of the Last Supper. On the other hand, the fountain is also called the “angelic fountain” and it is considered the door to the infinite”.

For the most brave ones here are some hints about some “dreadful” places: Statuto Square, on the western side – looks at the darkness from the esoteric point of view – it was developed over an area that was once occupied by a necropolis then chosen as a place for public capital executions. Legends and ghosts – believe it or not – linger around other places in the town such as the villa Tesoriera – whose park is called “the devil’s” -, Falletti palace and Carlina square. The blessing of the Church covers it all making Turin the religious heart on the occasion of the first exhibition of the Sindone (Shroud) after its restoration in 2010.

Luciana Francesca Rebonato

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