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Palazzo Branciforte

Palazzo Branciforte

Art, history, tradition. A cradle of Sicilian spirit but also a fulcrum of new knowledge. An architectural unicum suspended between past and present. This is the calling card of Palazzo Branciforte, a historical building in the heart of Palermo which stands as a point of reference in the cultural panorama of Sicily and Italy, reopened 23 May 2012 in the presence of the President of the Republic Giorgio Napolitano, thanks to the commitment of the Fondazione Sicilia and the major restoration project conceived by architect and designer Gae Aulenti.

Palazzo Branciforte is a unique place, mixing identity and innovation. An area that combines history with archaeology, with modern and contemporary art, with books and the great Italian culinary tradition. A venue that, thanks to its innovative, high-tech auditorium, can host conferences and major cultural events.

The extraordinary archaeological collection of the Fondazione Sicilia is housed in a wing on the ground floor, where 4,700 findings are on display, including fascinating prehistoric vases, ceramics of different kind and from different ages, terracottas, bronzes, glass, ivory and many other masterpieces.

On view on the first floor of the Palazzo are the collections of medieval and modern Sicilian coins, a testament to ongoing minting in Sicily, from the Aragons right up to the Bourbons, and a stamp collection that also includes some rare postal documents. Another area on the first floor is home to fifty-five sculptures, from the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Standing out among its many striking interiors is the wooden structure, the final testament of the “Monte dei pegni di Santa Rosalia pawn house, steeped in history with its wooden shelving, internal stairs, raised platforms and walkways and the areas for storing the objects left by the people of Palermo during the years in which the Palazzo was home to the Monte dei pegni. Another prestigious gem is the library, which includes over 50 thousand books. A vast and varied section deals with the history of Sicily, history of art, coins and archaeology. Inside the large reading hall on the first floor, encyclopaedias, annuals and dictionaries can be consulted, as well as periodicals, miscellany and monographs on a range of subjects.

Museum services are guaranteed thanks to the work of Civita Sicilia

In the knowledge that culture, art and fine Italian cuisine have always stood as a testament to the Italian excellence that has made these sectors our nation’s best calling card, Gambero Rosso has created its famous Cookery school in a wing of this historical building. The Palazzo is also home to Ristorante Branciforte. A place for refined palates, in which it is possible to admire fine examples of tin-glazed pottery, produced between the fifteenth and the eighteenth century by Italian, European and Middle and Far eastern kilns, as well as two masterpieces of Italian nineteenth-twentieth century painting by Antonino Leto and Ettore De Maria Bergler.

All the news about the Palazzo can be accessed by visiting the website www.palazzobranciforte.it

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