In Ravenna, mosaics are everywhere: in museums, street name signs, parks, flower pots, shop windows, squares but also on the external walls of private houses, in a constant dialogue with the lives of citizens.
Walking around the historical centre, you will immediately notice the charming street name signs realised in mosaic by artist Annafietta, which are not only road signs anymore, but also beautiful artistic ornaments witnessing the history, culture and tradition of Ravenna.
If you want to visit a true open-air museum dedicated to music, you can check Parco della Pace, a project that began in 1988 thanks to the International Association of Contemporary Mosaicists and the Munciipality of Ravenna, under the patronage of an artistic committee chaired by the great art historian Giulio Carlo Argan.
The park hosts various mosaic works realised by artists coming from all over the world that want to spread the same message: peace and friendship among peoples.
Open-air art can be found also in Piazza della Resistenza. Here stands the beautiful monumental fountain called Ardea Purpurea, designed and realised by artist Marco Bravura, famous mosaic artist from Ravenna.
The 12-metres-high sculpture recalls the shape of human DNA and is highly symbolic: with its helical movement, it evokes life and regeneration.
Mosaic sculptures are scattered all around the city and are well integrated with the various buildings in streets and squares.
Right next to Porta Adriana, for example, is a mosaic monument dedicated to the memory of the former mayor of Ravenna Pier Paolo D’Attorre, who died prematurely. The same happens in the Darsena area, where the city pays homage to the former mayor Fabrizio Matteucci with a work dedicated to him.
The Speyer Gardens, in close proximity to the railway station, host Gerusalemme Celeste, ispired by the many depictions of the Holy City in the mosaics of Ravenna.
Particular attention should be paid to “I Fiori di Ravenna” (lit. the flowers of Ravenna) project.
Many buildings and front doors of the historical centre of the city are decorated with flowered tiles placed beside the house numbers and realised by mosaic artists from Ravenna.
A symbolic gesture by women artists to celebrate not only the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women (November 25th), but most of all a tangible symbol of the city’s attention towards women in difficulty.
A welcoming sight to women, so that they feel welcome guests in a welcoming place.
If you are keen on videogames and street art, you absolutely cannot miss the works of the French street artist Invader, famous all over the world for his “invasions”, which give life to small mosaic images placed on the walls of the city that he visits. In Italy, he “invaded” only Rome and Ravenna.
In 2005, the artist was commissioned a mosaic work on the roof of the Planetarium – it is a huge representation of Spock, protagonist of the sci-fi series Star Trek, metaphorically inviting “invaders” to visit Ravenna.