Home » DISCOVERING TURIN » Mau, where art is in the streets

20 Giugno 2019

Mau, where art is in the streets

Wall paintings in the Borgo Vecchio neighborhood of Campidoglio

Fabio Gusella (translation by Chiara Gariglio)


Let’s imagine for a moment Turin at the end of XIX century, with its railing houses, the cobbled streets, the artisan workshops. Well, time travel is possible, since there is a place in Turin where it seems like time has stopped: we are talking about the Borgo Vecchio of Campidoglio. It is an old working-class neighborhood a few steps from Maria Vittoria hospital, a “village in the city” that still keeps part of its XIX century style.

Going deep into the most hidden streets of the Borgo, located between corso Tassoni and corso Svizzera, something new and unexpected surprises us: those chipped walls and fake windows, in fact, overlook dozens of wall paintings almost intrigued by our passage.

We are walking through the streets of Mau, the Museo di Arte Urbana of Turin. It was created in 1995 to regenerate the area and since the beginning it was supported by the inhabitants of the Borgo. Today, Mau is still a unique example in Italy of open-air contemporary art museum. Year after year more wall paintings were added and today there are almost 140 installations.

As an alternative to the guided tours organized by the museum, it is also nice to discover the neighborhood by yourself. Let’s start then from the first “hall”: next to the church of Sant’Alfonso de’ Liguori in via Netro, on the wide wall of a building, a child points at a great shiny sun, therefore inviting us to enter the neighborhood. We accept the invitation and start walking through different streets, always remembering to look upwards because a wall painting could surprise us from above. An old lady leans out of a fake window, a kind man lifts his hat as to say hello, an enormous swarm of flies rests on a house, a shy window comes out of the petals of a rose.
Like this, step by step, any passer-by can become the visitor of a museum: this is the strength of Mau.


In collaboration with Study in Torino


Tag: , , , , ,


Lascia un commento