Barocco & Neobarocco

Barocco & Neobarocco festival 2024

Barocco & Neobarocco festival is to take place from May 31 to June 2, 2024, in Ragusa Ibla

Barocco & Neobarocco returns to Ragusa Ibla from May 31 to June 2, 2024. The festival celebrates design and business culture in the city’s most beautiful palaces, attracting internationally renowned scholars, designers, artists, fashion designers, chefs and producers.

Barocco & Neobarocco

Barocco & Neobarocco festival brought forward to June for the fourth edition

The fourth edition of the Barocco & Neobarocco festival will not be held in September but from May 31 to June 2, 2024, with installations open until June 28. Ragusa Ibla confirms its role as host of the event. The city’s narrow alleys and steep stairways open onto stunning squares where churches, convents and aristocratic residences bring to mind traditions, old splendors and atmospheres full of charm. The city, with its historic palaces Nicastro and Cosentini, Unesco World Heritage Sites, together with the former San Vincenzo Ferreri Church and the Antico Convento, becomes the ideal stage for reinterpreting the Baroque style through design, painting, sculpture, photography and fashion.

Barocco & Neobarocco
O Vulcano by Giovannetti Collezioni

The event is the brainchild of architect Romberto Semprini, with the invaluable support of Cristina Morozzi. Students from the Brera, Catania, and Timisoara (Romania) Fine Arts Academies and the Dadi department – Fashion Alive project of Università della Campania Luigi Vanvitelli, together with emerging artists from the Liceo Artistico of Ragusa will exhibit their new projects on this occasion. Moreover, local and non-local design firms will collaborate with Sicilian and international designers to create new objects with a neo-Baroque theme.

New international participants

For the first time in Sicily, architect Nigel Coates, Professor Emeritus at the Royal Academy of London, will make his debut at the festival with Baroccabilly: a unique series consisting of different pieces, including furniture and lamps, that mix Baroque with the rebellious rockabilly. Dario Ghibaudo, a Milanese artist, will transform heterogeneous materials into sculptures with sensual curves, while architect Roberto Semprini, artistic director of the festival and director of the Design course at Brera, in collaboration with Via Tov, will present Baroque Mirror, a collection of mirrors that reinterpret in a contemporary way the style that has made the Val di Noto famous, with a play on wonder and excessive decoration.

The Milanese architect Maurizio Favetta, on the other hand, will present The King & The Queen, an impactful installation that uses three-dimensional decorative elements to amaze, engage and fascinate. Valeria Bonalume, former Italian pole dance champion, will also take part in Favetta’s installation with a performance titled Baroque Body Color Show by Caparol. Finally, designer Giuseppe Campailla will present B2B, a dynamic sofa with a radical style, whose form recalls the organic lines of the Baroque decorations of the Val di Noto. Its concave form welcomes and cradles the user, inviting them to let themselves go and find the best position in complete freedom.

Alessandro Enriquez, an exhibition and a pop-up store

Neobaroque will also be the focus of a fashion show by Alessandro Enriquez, who returns to his home region to show his latest collection full of color, fantasy and creativity in the evocative setting of the former church of San Vincenzo Ferreri, near the entrance to the Giardini Iblei. These gardens will also host a Neobarocque-themed dinner at the Antico Convento – the only accommodation facility within the famous Baroque park –, where the designer, in the role of master of ceremonies, will organize a special moment for his guests together with the young managers of the facility. Moreover, a pop-up store will be set up in the city for summer in the historic Rainbow shop, at via Roma 200, displaying Enriquez’s spring/summer 2024 collection.

Barocco & Neobarocco
Alessandro Enriquez exhibition

A path of light and sound: Sara Ricciardi’s installation and the theatrical performance of the Cantus Novo polyphonic choir

In the halls of Palazzo Nicastro, one of the most beautiful Baroque palaces in Sicily, still partly under restoration, architect Angelo Sanzone will present a lighting design installation entitled Analogic Light. In the entrance hall, visitors will be welcomed by a large central steaming sofa entitled O Vulcano by Giovannetti Collezioni, a tribute to Etna by architect Roberto Semprini. On the other hand, Sara Ricciardi will bring to the Donnafugata Castle Under the Willow Tree, an installation curated by Milan-based 5VIE that invites visitors to enter the sound branches of a weeping willow, made with ancient trimmings and activated by the movement of passers-by. There will also be several theatrical and musical performances, including the one by Cantus Novo polyphonic choir, directed by Maestro Giovanni Giaquinta with a very eclectic repertoire ranging from Vivaldi to Pooh.

Conference calendar

The conferences of the Barocco & Neobarocco festival will be attended by illustrious speakers such as Gilda Bojardi, editor in chief of INTERNI, and Cristina Morozzi, journalist and design critic, whose speeches will be held in Piazza Pola. At the Donnafugata Castle, Salvatore Silvano Nigro, literary critic, writer and essayist will present Il Principe Fulvo, an essay written in the style of a novel on the life and works of Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa. Gianni Canova, film critic and Rector of IULM, will accompany him with his book Palpebre, a Baroque journey into hell and the body.

Under the willow tree. Photo: Eugenio Novajra

Related Articles


Agape: 50 years of excellence

“In realtà, volevamo fare dell’altro” (“Actually, we wanted to do something else”) is the title of the exhibition celebrating the 50th anniversary of Agape, a company founded on the banks of the Mincio River in 1973.

Read more »