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24 Ottobre 2019

Guide to urban art: Aurora

An itinerary to discover large murals, metal sculptures and installations in this part of Turin

Francesca Vaglio Laurin (translation by Giulia Schimmenti)

urban art - aurora

The mural “Cùltus” in via Pietro Egidi 3

Our journey to discover Turin’s urban art takes us to Aurora, a popular neighborhood located on both sides of river Dora, near the city centre. Our itinerary, accompanied by these photos, is based on some of the works mentioned in AurorArt, an initiative promoted in 2018 by Circoscrizione 7 to raise awareness of the art works in the district, which can be also visited thanks to an interactive map.

Our tour starts in the heart of the area of Porta Palazzo: Piazza della Repubblica, home of the largest open market in Europe, where every day different tastes, cultures and languages mix together. On the north side of the square stands the Antica Tettoia dell’Orologio, which houses one of the covered parts of the market. On the external facade, since 2006, there is the art work Amare le differenze by artist Michelangelo Pistoletto, part of the larger project of Luci d’Artista, and composed of a series of colored neon lights that take up the title of the work in 39 different languages.
On the opposite side of the square is the Galleria Umberto I: on six lunettes of the vault of the building, artist Mauro Chesso created the painting Negozi e mercati, a tribute to the city market of Porta Palazzo.
Next to the Gallery, in via Pietro Egidi 3, the collective of artists Truly Design painted the mural Cùltus, an anamorphic composition of bright colors. The work is part of the TOward 2030. What are you doing? project, promoted by the City of Turin and Lavazza to transform the 17 Sustainable Development Goals set by the United Nations into street art, and is dedicated to the defeat of world hunger.
Another mural of the initiative is located on the west side of Piazza della Repubblica, in via Cardinale Cagliero, where there is an enormous whale made out of waste: it is La vita sott’acqua, painted by the artist Mr Fijodor and focused on the defence and conservation of oceans.

Continuing along via Cagliero, which becomes via Lanino, you enter the maze of narrow streets in the Borgo Dora area, where there are dozens of murals. Looking up at via Mameli 18 you can see Chorus, a dance of female figures in traditional clothes painted by artist Lisa Lazzaretti on the occasion of the Picturin festival in 2011.
Entering the heart of the district, piazza Borgo Dora, we find instead the Mosaico a frammentazione e ricomposizione ceramica per la Città di Torino, made in 1999 by students of the Primo Liceo Artistico coordinated by architect and artist Luciano Cappellari.
On the opposite side, on the columns and walls in front of the Cortile del Maglio, there are a series of murals – different in theme, size and author – that together make up the square Go Art Factory, opened in 2017.
From via Borgo Dora, taking Lungo Dora Agrigento, you come to cross corso Giulio Cesare, a real artery of the area. Beyond the river, at number 20, stands the monumental facade painted by the collective of writers Monkeys Evolution, who signed several murals of the city. Also part of the Toward30 project, the work is called Partnership for the Goals and represents an interweaving of large colored threads.

urban art - aurora

The sculpture “Fiati” by Paolo Grassino, Schiapparelli Garden

Continuing along the river until the crossroads with corso XI Febbraio, you arrive at the Schiapparelli garden, at the centre of which stand the headquarters of Smat, the Turin Metropolitan Water Company. Inside the garden there are some sculptures and art works, all placed here in 2017: Genesi (2017) by Luigi Stoia, a block of stone divided into two from which sprout limbs in bronze; Loto Eccentrico by Luisa Valentini, a floral steel structure that stands above a small pool of rippled water, and Fiati, a pair of deer made out of wire mesh made by Paolo Grassino.
On the wall surrounding the garden, in 2014 the artists Wens and Reser painted Acqua, a long wall with blue shades.
Opposite the entrance to the Smat we finally find Cuneo con frecce, a large wedge of carved bronze that comes out of a round water tank. Placed here in 2007 on commission of Smat, the work bears the signature of sculptor and goldsmith Arnaldo Pomodoro.

Our tour ends with three murals made by three street artists known internationally, all starring the animal world.
Going up corso XI Febbraio you cand find via Fiochetto on the left: here, on a facade of the Italian-Arabic centre Dar Al Hikma, stands a huge mural by Italian artist Ericailcane: created for the 2010 edition of the Picturin festival, it depicts four animal figures with anthropomorphic features.
Returning to the river and resuming along Dora Savona, there is the monumental Donnola, a mural created in 2010 by Belgian artist Roa that covers the entire length of the facade of the building at number 30, with a weasel holding a mouse between its front legs.
The last stop takes us to the other side of river Dora, at the corner of via Ancona and via Parma: here French Mantra Rea, also known for his large works scattered throughout the world, painted in 2019 The ode of collapse, a composition of butterflies and moths that wants to draw attention to the risk of extinction of these insects, whose population has been declining dramatically in the last century due to the destruction of their habitat.


In collaboration with Study in Torino


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