The Sicilian village of Gibellina, in the province of Trapani, was destroyed in 1968 by the earthquake that hit a large portion of western Sicily in the night between January 14 and 15, causing the death of nearly four hundred people.
After the tragedy, mayor Ludovico Corrao decided to rebuild the village with the help of world-renowned artists such as Alberto Burri, Pietro Consagra, Mario Schifano, Andrea Cascella, Arnaldo Pomodoro, and Franco Angeli.
The new Gibellina was built about twenty kilometers from the original location. Burri refused to work for the new site (in the municipality of Salemi), and created his famous “Cretto” (meaning “crack”, “fissure”, “deep cleft”) on the ruins of the old village, currently “frozen” by the giant work of art, one of the largest in the world.
The new Gibellina is an open-air museum with squares, fountains, towers, doors, monuments and gardens conceived by artists and architects such as Ludovico Quaroni, Francesco Venezia, Alessandro Mendini, and Mimmo Rotella – in addition to the ones we already mentioned.
While there is no general accord about the overall value of the project, the negative vote on the abandonment of the site – which includes a range of noteworthy creations – is unanimous.