Do you really know Ravenna? For some of you the right question would be, Do you know Ravenna at all? A Unesco site town that should be known all over the world for its wonderful gold and blue mosaics, its byzantine huge churches and its ancient history. But maybe Ravenna is more than that and, as Romans used to say, “repetita iuvant”. A place maybe wordly well known but there is always a new reason to talk about it.
Ravenna, the capital of Sacred Roman Empire, soon had the look of a Byzantine imperial residence: they sprang great civil and religious buildings that emulated, in the architecture and decoration, those of the East Capital.
The most important monuments are still existing and unveil a town that has kept it’s original mood. A town that has never forgotten its past and still feels the center of the world. A town that has in its mosaics the very essence of its history and, together with Venice, keep on telling its stories through mosaics.
Ravenna: a new perspective
It seems that this town has nothing else to offer to those who visit it, maybe stepping out one of the huge cruise ships that stops in the harbor, a few kilometers far from the center town. So I will try to show you a different way to look at Ravenna, with the help of Marco Miccoli of Bonobolabo.
Marco is many things: an instagrammer, a skateboarder, a man of culture, a gentle guy and the creator of a street art festival in town, called Subsidenze. The idea is simple: towns can be lived in a more pleasant way if they are beautiful even in their most peripheral parts. Walls of houses, normally ugly and anonymous, can be work of arts, nice to be seen every day, if they are seen as canvas to paint on.
The new docks in Ravenna are an example but the town is becoming more and more an international point of reference for young writers, who find here, places to express their art and new inspiration coming from the town itself and its history.
So, leave your ideas about Ravenna aside, and have a ride with me around the town. To move faster, since the murales are scattered in many places, we hired the yellow bikes available at the Touristic information point in center town. And here we go.
Painting the town: Ravenna of the street art
Marco explains us that the project: “there are a lot of popular houses in town and the wall are usually of a very sad color. We started asking the tenants to let us use their walls, hiring them to international writers. And so we started. Now we do not even need to ask to find new walls. People understood and shared our philosophy and Ravenna has a new artistic movement that come from the bottom”.
Qbic work of art!
It’s warm outside..and sunny. We spent the morning in the quiet of the Bevano river mouth. While we are biking hard following Marco, I realize how different and unknown can be every town, seen with the eyes of a local and how many things tourists and visitors can lose. This is one of the reasons why I love my job!
Disclosure: this post was realized during the Settimana of Buon Vivere Blog tour. I would love to thank Davide Marino of Ravenna tourism office for helping me giving all the information and logistic support, Marco Miccoli of Bonobolabo and Indastria for being so kind to welcome us and tour us around the town.
If you want to do the bike tour of Street Art in Ravenna, please contact Marco Miccoli, and he will be glad to guide you.