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Explore a stunning new exhibition at Sicily’s Valley of the Temples Explore a stunning new exhibition at Sicily’s Valley of the Temples

Discover 13 new contemporary sculptures on show at Sicily’s UNESCO-listed archaeological park, a century after its rediscovery
25 October 2021

Celebrating 100 years since its reawakening, Sicily’s Valley of the Temples Archaeological Park has opened a stunning new exhibition to the public.

The UNESCO World Heritage Site, located in Agrigento, now displays 13 monumental sculptures, created by Venice-born artist Gianfranco Meggiato and curated by Daniela Brigbone.

Titled Quantum Man: There is No Future Without Memory, the contemporary pieces are inspired by quantum theory, and sit alongside ancient Greek architecture to provide a thought-provoking juxtaposition.

Visitors have the chance to explore the outdoor exhibition and discover connections between the history and mythology. The striking sculptures have been carefully placed among the site to prompt dialogue with the rich cultural and mythological contexts of each of the ancient temples, their gods and legends.

Gianfranco Meggiato – Valle dei Templi – Lo Specchio dell’Assoluto

The rediscovery of the Valley of the Temples

It was a British archaeologist who rediscovered and unearthed the site back in 1921. Sir Alexander Hardcastle is little-known for his work, however he was the person behind the extensive excavation and restoration project at the Valley of the Temples.

After the financial crisis of 1929, Hardcastle sadly died penniless in an asylum, despite having been made an honorary citizen of the city of Agrigento and granted the rank of Commander of the Order of the Crown of Italy.

On what would have been his 149th birthday (25 October 2021), Meggiato dedicates the exhibition to his memory and his legacy.

He said: “When I heard of the sad fate of Sir Alexander Hardcastle – an English archaeologist by now almost forgotten and ignored by most – and realised that 2021 would be the centenary of his commencing work in the Valley, I felt moved to find a way to honour him and restore his reputation, since it was in large part thanks to his passion and generosity that the Valley of Temples came to life a second time and became the UNESCO World Heritage Site it is today.”

One of Gianfranco’s sculptures at the Valley of Temples

Curator Daniela Brignone said: “Gianfranco Meggiato composes an ideal journey inside one of the most important archaeological sites in the world, tackling the memory of the past and the enigmatic perspectives of the future to reflect on Man in search of himself.

“These works open up an inner world around which revolves a repertoire of mythological characters and symbols that become an allegory of Man’s living space. The Quantum science which inspired the artist reveals mystery and cosmic connections.”

‘Quantum Man: There Is No Future Without Memory’ will be on display to the public until 4 January 2022.

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