Restoration work on the Arena from the Renaissance to contemporary times in a book by Cattolica Assicurazioni. Mayor: “A gift to the city and to its internationally renowned symbol”
If the Arena has effectively become a symbol of international renown, it is in part thanks to the restoration work carried out over the centuries to preserve it and keep its original beauty intact.
Restoration of the Arena was begun by the people of Verona 450 years ago and has continued ever since. The story of the work has been published in an in-depth study entitled ‘Arena di Verona, the Renaissance of a Monument’.The book by the scholars Giovanni Castiglioni and Marco Cofani, is a tribute to Verona by the Cattolica Assicurazioni Group, which has always been present in the city and involved in its history. This celebratory volume, including previously unpublished illustrations and photographs, tells the tale of restoration work on the amphitheatre from the mid-15th to the 20th century.
It also illustrates the restoration work carried out over the last few decades, which has been significant both for the considerable resources invested and for the work carried out, preserving the monument and introducing important technological innovations.
The concept of enhancing and enjoying the amphitheatre is extremely topical, and a symbol of post-Covid recovery not just for Italy, but also for the world.
It is no coincidence that the book was presented inside the Arena, where the stage is being set up and preparations are under way for the start of the opera season and the concerts that will take place from 5 June onwards.
Mayor Federico Sboarina, President of the Cattolica Assicurazioni Group Paolo Bedoni, Superintendent Vicenzo Tinè and the authors of the book Giovanni Castiglioni and Marco Cofani attended.
“I would like to thank Cattolica Assicurazioni for this gift to the city, which is a sign of the strong connection between the people of Verona and their most iconic monument,” the mayor said. “The truth is that the Arena is no longer only the preserve of the people of Verona. The work on our amphitheatre is of such high quality that it has become a symbol that is not only Italian, but international. The Arena is the best preserved outdoor theatre in the world, the only one that will reopen to the public in a few days with live shows and concerts and an increased capacity of six thousand seats. We have the task and duty not only to preserve it, but also to make it into increasingly important hub for the area, and at this specific point in time, for relaunching our economy”.
"The Arena is not only a temple of opera music, it is the guardian of the soul of Verona," said President Bedoni. “This inseparable link is highlighted in the pages of this marvellous book, which aims to explore the hidden treasures of this globally renowned jewel, that requires safeguarding on a daily basis. Cattolica Assicurazioni has always had a strong link with the Verona area and its history, and chose to give this precious gift to the community in the conviction that the city’s prosperity is indissolubly linked to the safeguarding and promotion of its symbolic monument".
"This study confirms that the Arena today is the result of work carried out over several centuries," Superintendent Tinè added. "Work that has enhanced the vocation of this special place, a monument but also, ever since it was first built, a venue for holding events. Now it is doing just that, with some top-notch performances. These two elements need to be balanced, and that is what we are all aiming to do.”
The project is celebrating an anniversary, 450 years since the grandiose restoration of the treasure located in Piazza Bra first began. After centuries of oblivion and abandonment, at the time this was a cultural operation without parallel in Europe. If the Arena is considered to be the best preserved Roman amphitheatre in the world, this it is due to the continuous restoration and maintenance work carried out over the last five centuries by the people of Verona. The legacy of this extraordinary work can still be seen in the Arena, with its characteristic architectural structure and versatility as a venue.
The book 'Arena di Verona, the Renaissance of a Monument'
The work by Castiglioni and Cofani aims to reveal a history of the Amphitheatre that is largely still unknown and at the same time packed with value, significance and curious facts. It does this through a text that is wide-ranging and based on strict scientific criteria, high-quality reproductions of the many available historical images, original and attractive graphics and a photographic campaign specially launched for the occasion. The work therefore aims to be a valuable tool for enhancing and disseminating cultural knowledge, paving the way to a new series of studies of the Arena and a fruitful reflection on its role in the future of Verona.
A digital edition of the book will also be available online on the Cattolica Assicurazioni website.