Curated by Beatrice Celli
On the occasion of the MAPPA DELLA CITTÀ EDUCANTE 2022/2023 project promoted by Roma Capitale and aimed at all schools in the territory, the Department for Preventive Education invited Beatrice Celli to lead a free workshop aimed at the 4thB class of the Istituto Istruzione Superiore Via Carlo Emery in Rome.
“Many of the truths we do not see are hidden in the shadows,” so wrote Guillaume Durand, bishop of Mende (1230-1296), referring to the esoteric meanings hidden in sacred buildings.
Indeed, observing some places of worship, and not only, one can often find apotropaic elements, that is, aimed at driving away nefarious presences and influences, as in the case of the Gargoyles of Notre Dame in Paris or the more local “masks.”
Participants are invited to reinterpret these elements, also taking inspiration from the place where the workshop will take place, Villa Torlonia. At first, “supernatural” experiences will be shared, that is, any strange or unexplainable event we have witnessed or been protagonists of, or alternatively legendary facts and not necessarily experienced firsthand, or anecdotes we have been told, in short, any story that is evidence of contact with other worlds or mysterious forces.
Starting from these suggestions, apotropaic elements will be created with clay during the workshop, which will be grafted into the spaces of the Villa Torlonia gardens with a dual function: that of storytelling (indirectly) but also of protection from negative influences.