La Mole Vanvitelliana
Città di Ancona
The Mole Vanvitelliana is certainly among the most characteristic monuments in the city of Ancona. With its unmistakable pentagonal layout, it stands out in every aerial view of the city and is easily recognised on every map of the city subsequent to the 17th century.
Luigi Vanvitelli created "the Mole" between 1733 and 1743 inside the largest urban reorganisation plan requested by Pope Clementine XII (whose statue stands in Piazza del Plebiscito).
The original aim of the construction was twofold: on the one hand it acts as an outer defensive bastion towards the sea, on the other it carries out an important sanitary function as a lazaret.
In fact, Ancona was at the centre of important international trade routes and needed a place of quarantine for goods and people coming from suspicious places.
Later on, the Mole was used for a series of varied functions among which included a prison.
The brick structure is elegant and moderate. On the eastern side one enters by means of a sizeable portal made of Istrian stone, restored after the bombings that took place during the Second World War.
At the centre of the elegant and spacious courtyard the small temple dedicated to Saint Rocco – protector against the plague – was erected to remember the old function of the structure.
Today, the Mole is a marvellous and multipurpose cultural hub.
In the restored premises the city’s most important contemporary exhibitions are displayed (among which is the Pinacoteca Civica Podesti). The conventin center has been created with a skilful synthesis between the elegance of the original structure and the modernity of the facilities: a 412-capacity conference room equipped with all the modern comforts, a production room and state of the art instrumentation.
During the summer the Mole becomes the pulsating heart of the city’s cultural life, playing host to cultural festivals, film screenings, music concerts and literary talks. Citizens interested in themes of culture and art will discover them here as they sharing ideas and projects on the surface of the water, whilst the illuminated city ascends Guasco Hill and acts as the natural and beautiful wings to the stage.
Special Thanks to:
Municipality of Ancona
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