Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Scary Statues and Mysterious Figures

pathway from Vitorchiano

Tuscia (or Etruria) located one hour north of Rome and a half hour from Civitavecchia port makes a perfect escape from the  tourist crowds. We residents enjoy a laid back lifestyle, excellent food and wine as well as peace, calm and the many off beat places such as the well known Sacro Bosco or Monster Park of Bomarzo.

Nearby are several other sites with strange stone sculptures, fountains and  the remains of elegant gardens-often hidden away in the underbrush or valleys. 

Photos by F. Micheletti 

stone heads Vitorchiano 

rock hewn cave in the Vitorchiano valley
Just beneath the town of Vitorchiano a steep trail zig-zags down into a verdant valley.

Trekking with CAI excursion to see the sculptures near Vitorchiano                 Thanks to F. Micheletti for photos 

 Here trekkers literally trip over the  mysterious monumental sculptures created in 1990 by a team of stone carvers who were invited to Vitorchiano from Easter Island, far away in the Pacific Ocean. 
Easter Island  head in Vitorchiano

Other weird and wonderful stone figures date back to the Renaissance and 16th century and were created by native sculptors (or captive Turkish ones??)  to awe visitors of local nobility, such as these in a wild setting just outside the town of Viterbo. 
moss covered fountain with   human heads spouts 

female figure, near Viterbo

Papacqua fountain figure, Soriano

In plain sight in the town of Soriano nel Cimino is the Papacqua fountain next to Palazzo Chigi-Albani and its many intriguing  stone figures which art critics have been trying to interpret for centuries.
Papacqua fountain in Soriano nel Cimino 

These scary statues are just a few of the many fascinating, little known aspects of the Tuscia area  that await visitors, especially  artists, anthropologists and those who enjoy the unusual. 

For more about these and other  mysterious sites of central Italy, between Tuscany and Umbria, check out my website, use the search bar of the blog and read my latest two books on the area.

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  1. I love this part of Italy (you already know this!).

  2. These comments were posted to my FB page.
    Janice R.
    I enjoyed all this in 2004, seems strange it was 10 yeRs ago! The memories are still with me though and a.load of photos. I would recommend this area especially to anyone interested in archeology, and the Bomarzo gardens are just a lot of fun!
    April 15 at 10:07pm · Unlike · 1

    Douglas Ritter One of our OSR grads shot a movie there, Charles Band -- Meridian -- or Kiss of the Beast -- with Sherlynn Fenn. A retelling of the Beauty and the Beast story.

  3. This is just gorgeous !*love* it all as the messages, the quality of the writing and the pictures. Thanks !