Off to Animated Villages: illustrations about the most beautiful villages, between fairy tales and legends

The "Borghi Animati" project, which won the Ministry of Culture's "Viaggio in Italia" contest, kicked off yesterday: an itinerary among the most beautiful villages, illustrated by taking inspiration from fairy tales and legends. Here are the first ones.

The project I Borghi Animati: lItalia come non lavreste mai immaginata, the winning initiative of Viaggio in Italia, the contest launched last September by the Ministry of Culture, in collaboration with Invitalia, to promote slow and proximity tourism in Italian villages through a digital and innovative way of storytelling, kicked off yesterday. The project, by Piacenza-based creative hub Thats Motion, was selected by a committee that collected more than 1,200 entries. The illustrations, created by twenty of the most active authors on the Italian scene, take their cue from legends, ancient stories and folk traditions linked to each territory. A digital journey that, through static and animated works, on MiC’s social profiles and digital spaces will offer Internet users unprecedented routes among Italian villages throughout the summer.

“Also in this summer, as in the last one,” says Culture Minister Dario Franceschini, “we are witnessing a strong desire to travel to Italy’s lesser-known places, inland areas and villages. The ministry is also promoting these forms of cultural tourism of proximity through a project featuring artists. The boroughs are a fundamental resource for the country, which is why, in the Recovery Plan, I asked for new resources of 1 billion euros to protect them along with rural construction.”

I journey winds through mysterious creatures and treasures, arcane spirits and goblins that lead along a fantastic itinerary to discover our most characteristic villages: from the Lucanian Acerenza, in whose cathedral, according to an ancient legend, are kept the Holy Grail and the remains of Dracula’s daughter, to Acitrezza, the small Sicilian fishing village, where Polyphemus, in love with Galatea and blinded by her anger, throws a large rock at his shepherd rival in love; all the way to Argegno, on the shores of Lake Como, where many people swear they have seen the Lariosaurus, a huge reptile covered in red scales, swim and sink into the lake waters.

And again: the fairy-tale journey proceeds to Sardinia on the shores of the colorful village of Bosa, famous for hosting one of the most peculiar and irreverent carnivals on the island; to Cervinia, a famous ski resort in the Aosta Valley, and here enlivened by Gargantua, the gentle giant who during his stay helps valley dwellers with his finger to press luva or retrieve an ox that has fallen into the ravine. A green dragon chose Orta San Giulio, in Piedmont, as its home, later freed by the Saint of the same name, while in Francavilla Fontana, in Apulia, a medieval legend has it that the baroque town was born on the very spot where a hunter, following Philip dAnjou, shot his arrow, which thus proved magical. Dancing forest elves, intelligent and good, swarm through the alleys of the small town of Gemona in Friuli Venezia Giulia, while in Vitorchiano, Lazio, the Maori of Easter Island carve a real Moai on a stone found there.

The caravan of animated pixies continues to Bobbio, in Emilia-Romagna, where the bridge, as legend has it, has a special archway because it is supported by dozens of little devils. Instead, the ghost of Sora Laura wanders around at Palazzo Vitelli alla Cannoniera in CittĂ  di Castello, Umbria, while in Palmoli, Abruzzo, the Mazz’marill, typical traditional sprites, lurk in the shrubs, waiting for visitors to the woods. The famous polentari of Corinaldo in the Marche region cook polenta in the village wells, while in Chiusi, Tuscany, a hen animates the town with an army of 500 golden chicks in tow. Instead, the Palio della Marciliana evokes atmospheres and characters from the medieval era in the Venetian town of Chioggia, while in Porto Venere, Liguria, a destination for artists and literati in the 1800s, a miraculous painting soars from the waters as told in a famous 13th-century legend. Witches hover over the skies of Castelrotto in Trentino Alto Adige, bringing thunderstorms with them, while the ringing of bells serves to keep them away, while the town of Squillace in Calabria can even boast of its founding by Odysseus. Finally, Termoli in Molise harbors the legend of the dragon Landoro that no fisherman had the courage to face while in the ancient town of Agropoli in Campania, it seems that one can still hear the cries of the Green Queen, the Saracen princess who fell in love with a young fisherman and is still waiting for her return.

Below are all the illustrations of the villages.

Acerenza (PZ), Basilicata | Illustrazione di Roberto Blefari - Hikimi
Acerenza (PZ), Basilicata | Illustration by Roberto Blefari - Hikimi

Aci Trezza (CT), Sicilia | Illustrazione di Elisa Macellari
Aci Trezza (CT), Sicily | Illustration by Elisa Macellari

Agropoli (SA), Campania | Illustrazioni di Massimiliano Marzucco
Agropoli (SA), Campania | Illustrations by Massimiliano Marzucco

Argegno (CO), Lombardia | Illustrazione di Giulia Zoavo
Argegno (CO), Lombardy | Illustration by Giulia Zoavo

Bobbio (PC), Emilia-Romagna | Illustrazione di Giulia Ripa Â? Wipa
Bobbio (PC), Emilia-Romagna | Illustration by Giulia Ripa Wipa

Bosa (OR), Sardegna | Illustrazione di Luca Cattivelli Â? Colorsynth
Bosa (OR), Sardinia | Illustration by Luca Cattivelli Colorsynth

Castelrotto (BZ), Trentino Alto Adige | Illustrazione di Mirko Cámia
Castelrotto (BZ), Trentino Alto Adige | Illustration by Mirko Cámia

Cervinia (AO), Valle DÂ?Aosta | Illustrazione di Chiara Vercesi
Cervinia (AO), Valle DAosta | Illustration by Chiara Vercesi

Chioggia (VE), Veneto | Illustrazione di Alessandro Pugiotto
Chioggia (VE), Veneto | Illustration by Alessandro Pugiotto

Chiusi (SI), Toscana | Illustrazione di Alessandra Marianelli Â? Luchadora
Chiusi (SI), Tuscany | Illustration by Alessandra Marianelli Luchadora

CittĂ  di Castello (PG), Umbria | Illustrazione di Silvia Reginato
CittĂ  di Castello (PG), Umbria | Illustration by Silvia Reginato

Corinaldo (AN), Marche | Illustrazione di Federico Tramonte
Corinaldo (AN), Marche | Illustration by Federico Tramonte

Francavilla Fontana (BR), Puglia | Illustrazione di Alice Eberti
Francavilla Fontana (BR), Puglia | Illustration by Alice Eberti

Gemona del Friuli (UD), Friuli Venezia Giulia | Illustrazione di Paopao
Gemona del Friuli (UD), Friuli Venezia Giulia | Illustration by Paopao

Orta San Giulio (NO), Piemonte | Illustrazione di Elisa Seitzinger
Orta San Giulio (NO), Piedmont | Illustration by Elisa Seitzinger

Palmoli (CH), Abruzzo | Illustrazione di Andrea DallÂ?Ara
Palmoli (CH), Abruzzo | Illustration by Andrea DallAra

Porto Venere (SP), Liguria | Illustrazione di Luca Soncini
Porto Venere (SP), Liguria | Illustration by Luca Soncini

Squillace (CZ), Calabria | Illustrazione di Christian Cornia
Squillace (CZ), Calabria | Illustration by Christian Cornia

Termoli (CB), Molise | Illustrazione di Giovanni Costa
Termoli (CB), Molise | Illustration by Giovanni Costa

Vitorchiano (VT), Lazio | Illustrazione di Federico Santoro
Vitorchiano (VT), Lazio | Illustration by Federico Santoro

Off to Animated Villages: illustrations about the most beautiful villages, between fairy tales and legends
Off to Animated Villages: illustrations about the most beautiful villages, between fairy tales and legends

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