"I came to America because I heard the streets were paved with gold. When I got here, I found out three things: first, the streets weren't paved with gold; second, they weren't paved at all; and third, I was expected to pave them. This well-known quote, said by an Italian immigrant to America, reminds us that life in the new world wasn't easy for o...

The choice of Matera as 2019’s European City of Culture will have astonished Italians of a certain age, although not those who have ever visited it. Fifty years ago, the city was designated the ‘national shame’ of Italy, embodying everything that was wrong with the impoverished south. But it was not true then and is little more than a hazy memory t...

A very interesting exhibition is being held in Matera, shedding a completely original light on the Renaissance and offering a new interpretation of one of the most important periods in the Western world’s art and culture, by focusing on Mediterranean routes, with the exchanges and relationships between cultures they brought, and artists’ journeys a...

Bread stamps are a symbol of the pastoral art of Murgia Materana. Until the 1950s, housewives used to knead bread at home and deliver it to the boys who worked at the ovens located in the city’s old districts and who oversaw the baking.  Since the ovens were mainly public or belonged to wealthy families, it became necessary to distinguish the loave...

There is no doubt that religious festivals represent a large part of the traditional Italian heritage. An expression of faith, of course, but also events with a strong social significance and bond of belonging to the community, especially in the South: Leonardo Sciascia, in "Corda Pazza" (Mad rope), about religious festivals wrote that in Sicily th...

Touring Matera is like experiencing a forgotten past - you feel as though you are setting foot in a nativity scene when you visit this charming city in Lucania. It’s no coincidence it’s referred to as the second Bethlehem, and was the setting for Mel Gibson’s movie The Passion, and Pier Paolo Pasolini’s Il Vangelo secondo Matteo (The Gospel Accordi...

With the longer days and warmer hours, Spring has finally sprung in Matera and the historic southern Italian city is making the most of its role as European Capital of Culture 2019. Two key projects are at the heart of this year's event. The first, called I-Dea, uses archives and collections from the Basilicata region. Joseph Grima is Matera 2019's...

Casting for the new James Bond movie is still under way, but a prominent part is set to be played by the ancient southern Italian town of Matera, Variety has learned. The town of 60,000 people will provide the setting for what is expected to become “Bond 25’s” prologue action sequence, similar to “Spectre’s” opening segment in Mexico City during Da...

During a two-day-trip to the southern regions of Puglia and Basilicata, Ambassador Eisenberg had the opportunity to visit the Leonardo factory in Grottaglie, where parts of the Boeing 787 fuselage are assembled, as well as the city of Matera, which was awarded the coveted title of 2019 European Capital of Culture. In Grottaglie, after touring the p...

"Ritengo che gli italiani siano brave persone" ha affermato il regista Francis Ford Coppola in un'intervista rilasciata a Biagio Maimone per il quotidiano America Oggi, riferendosi alla problematica dell'immigrazione, dicendosi convinto che "prevarrà la benevolenza e la gentilezza degli italiani" nell'affrontarla. “L’America ha goduto di molti bene...