Sicily, land of sea and nature, full of light and … creativity .
A land and a place anthropologically complex and at the same time fascinating : Greek and Roman art, Byzantine and Islamic heritage, baroque and folk traditions do not tell everything about her .
We look at the present, at least the last decade, and we discover a world vibrant, modern, which is expressed as “street culture” : in this land street culture unites art and food .
For some years the food on the street (“street food”) has been riding high, making it a viable alternative to fast food or general supermarket products. And it is fast, cheap and pleasurable, in short, in step with the needs of modern times. There are specialized sites and mobile Apps to help find the closest food track (American-derived)! Not to mention the festivals, they are becoming increasingly popular in the Italian squares.
Few know that Sicily has always been the land par excellence of this cult. Here it has never been a fashion, seen as an event that registers a peak and than a decline. Including, arancini, cannoli, bread and cake which were born well before the street food trend arrived!
Depending on the area the street foods can change dramatically. Walking to the markets of Palermo, or those Pachino, and your nose will dive into completely different worlds.
Sicily has been inhabited for over ten thousand years and several civilizations have trodden the soils of its strategic position at the center of the Mediterranean. That’s how its dishes, especially the simple ones, from the street, have been affected by Egyptian, Phoenician, Greek, Roman, Byzantine, Arab, German and Spanish influences – street food arose from street culture.
The American website VirtualTourist.com has compiled the world ranking of the top ten cities to enjoy the best street food. The cities of Asia take the lion’s share with top three places on the podium (Bangkok wins followed by Singapore and Penang). In fourth position Marrakech and soon after, unbelievably, Palermo arrives! The Sicilian capital is the only European city in the top ten and the only Italian city to be included in the ranking.
In short, with more and more trend to street food, Sicily and its street culture, as a result, becomes more and more a centre of interest.
We remain on the road, because art, in a Sicily increasingly attentive to new artistic currents, moves in this “ground”!
Street Art is an art form that is manifested in public places, usually illegally (see our article about Banksy), often as a form of criticism (attempting to abolish private property). The phenomenon of urban graffiti art reached its peak in the 90’s, also affecting other areas of communication, marketing and in general the taste of thousands of people. Towards the end of the first decade of the 21st century, the movement has taken a different tack and is now partly institutionalized in the relationship with municipalities, museums and galleries with which it often cooperates.
This is what is happening in Sicily: Giardini Naxos, which overlooks Taormina, every year Emergence – International Urban Actions Festival takes place – with artists from all over Europe. In Catania, in the heart of Civita, stands a huge painting of the old walls and the battered area. In 2010, Microbe, a street artist known worldwide but who has taken the first steps right here, created it. In Ragusa in the summer of 2015 FestiWall was held, an event promoted by the city that involved five artists, one of the biggest names in international Street Art, on five city walls. The project was born from the desire to redevelop the city through public art.
Street Art arises therefore, in this context and we hope more and more, as a tool it is able to counteract the daily and imperceptible “addiction to bad” that the cement and concrete cultures have led.
Street Culture: the culture that comes from the street, whether it is food or art, keeps the spontaneity and the hardness of its origins. And it is nice because it’s irreverent but also knows how to relate, it is unpredictable and amazing …
Photo: STREET ART SILO planned by Emergence. Site Specific action painting that will transform the group of silos in the Port of Catania in a real monument of the XXI century.
Ph Tripping Catania