Bologna – On the east: university district
In the eastern part of Bologna's centro storico, bounded to the west by via Oberdan, and from the south by the Maggiore Strada, there are many senior faculties of the university, mostly in large 17th and 18th century palaces. It is probably the nicest part of the city, when you want to spend the day - or the night - among cheap bars, restaurants and shops geared towards student clientele. Here, too, the easiest way to find out about the program of cultural events is: the posters stick to the walls of buildings in via Zamboni and the alleys leading from it - via delle Moline, via delle Belle Arti, via Mentana - and bars and cafes often organize some happenings.
Via Rizzoli leads to the University Quarter from Piazza Maggiore, ending in Piazza di Porta Ravegnana, where the Torre degli Asinelli towers are located (codz. 9.00-19.00) and the perilously curve of Torre Garisenda, better known as Due Torri, the only surviving among literally hundreds of towers scattered throughout the city during the Middle Ages. The first one offers a panoramic view of the city center and beyond, over the red-tiled roofs of the houses, the flat plain and the hills to the south.
Via San Stefano runs east of Due Torri to the medieval gate next to a set of four - originally seven - churches called Santo Stefano. Three of the churches overlook the square, and the most interesting of them is the polygonal San Sepolcro (closed. 12.00-15.30), which is entered through the Crocifisso Church. Tradition proclaims, that Pilate washed his hands in the bowls standing in his courtyard after he had condemned Christ to death. Inside is the tomb of St.. Petroniusza, whose model was the Church of the Holy Sepulcher in Jerusalem. From here you can go to San Vitale e Agricola, the oldest church in Bologna, built from fragments of Roman ruins in the 5th century; in turn, in the fourth church, Trinita, which is on the other side of the courtyard, houses a small museum (codz. 9.00-12.00 i 15.30-18.00) with the reliquary of St.. Petronius and some dull paintings.
North of Santo Stefano, on the major road, there is another interesting monument in the district, gothic church of Santa Maria dei Servi, completed in 1386 r., with frescoes from the same period. Going north from the church, you reach via Zamboni, near and around which there are many old palaces, housing various university institutions. Many of these buildings were decorated by members of the Bologna academies, which after 1600 r. played a leading role in Italian art. Tibaldi, better known as an architect, he picked up a brush, to decorate the main building, Palazzo Poggi, at number 31 (pn.-pt. 9.00-12.30). His fresco depicting Ulysses was influenced by Michelangelo's Sistine Chapel and played a role in the famous dispute over the restoration of the latter, for art historians have used Tibaldi's fresco as evidence, that they correctly recreated the colors in Michelangelo's paintings. Most people are drawn here by Specola, that is, the observatory located on the fourth floor of the building, and in the small Museo di Astronomia located here there is a number of 18th-century instruments and a fresco depicting the firmament - it was painted only seventy years after Galileo was imprisoned for heretical views on the cosmos.
Via Zamboni prowadzi do Piazza Rossini, where the church of San Giacomo Maggiore is hidden behind a corrugated iron fence and scaffolding, Romanesque construction started in 1267 r., and then expanded several times. The main attraction here is the Bentivoglio Chapel, decorated with measures laid down by Annibal Bentivog-lio to commemorate the family's victory in the local dispute of the year 1488. Lorenzo Costa painted frescoes depicting the Apocalypse, Triumph of Death and Madonna on the throne, and of course the Bentivoglio family, whose members look suspiciously pious, but the artist tried to carefully characterize them, which was new in those days. Other frescoes by Costa and works by Francesco Francia adorn the Oratoria di Santa Cecilia (one must ask the sacristan to open it); they show episodes from the lives of Saints Cecilia and Valerian. Opposite the chapel is also the tomb of Anton Galeazzo Bentivoglio by Jacop della Quercia, one of the artist's last works.
Piazza Rossini was named after a 19th-century composer, who studied in Conservatorio G.. B. Martini. The local music library is one of the most important in Europe, has a number of original manuscripts, some are exhibited in public alongside a small number of paintings. Further, going north via Zamboni, around Porta San Donato are home to many of the university's largest faculties, and the Museo di Anatomia Umana in via Imerio 48. It is a strange place to explore, but it would be a shame to leave Bologna without seeing the repulsive ones (and beautiful) wax carvings (pn.-pt. 9.00-12.00 i 15.30-19.00). Until the 19th century, they were used for medical demonstrations, and their originality is on par with all other works of art in the city. There were two schools of wax carving in Italy: metoda florencka, in which limbs were used, organs and bones for making molds, and Bologna, in which everything was hand carved, including veins and capillaries, which rolled like plasticine. The line between art and science was not strictly defined, and at the beginning of the 18th century. in Bologna, the workshops of Anna Morandi Mazzolini and Ercole Lelli produced figures, which were more than just clinical aids. For example, Mazzolini took a self-portrait with a brain section, with tufts of hair tied to a pulled back scalp; two other figures, displayed in glass cases, they are shaped like classical statues, one holds a sickle in her hands, and another scythe.
Nearby is the Pinacoteca Nazionale on via delle Belle Arti 56 (wt.-sb. 9.00-14.00, nd. 9.00-12.30; 2000 L), whose collections of paintings provide a little less entertainment and include mainly works by Bologna artists. Here are the canvases of the 14th-century local artist Vitale da Bologna, later works by Francia and Tibaldi and paintings from the most artistically prolific period in the history of the city, the beginning of the 17th century, when Annibale and Agostino Carracci were active here, Guido Reni i Guercino (squint). The Pieta Niccola delFrca stands out from the sculpture, moved here from the Church of Santa Maria in Vita, whose life-size figures are imbued with affection.
North and South: Duomo. museum and church of San Francesco
North of Bologna's central squares there is much less to see. Located just behind Piazza Nettuno, the Duomo dates back to the 10th century., but since then it has been rebuilt many times and today is quite a common baroque church.
More interesting is the Museo Cmco Medioevale e dal Rinascimento opposite (pn. and Wed-Sat. 9.00-14.00, nd. 9.00-12.30; 2000 L), located in the Renaissance Palazzo Fava, decorated with Carracci frescoes. However, the harvest, recently moved from the museum across the square, they are not very sensational and include armor, ceramics, numerous tombs and busts of various popes and other dignitaries, as well as several sculptures by Jacop della Quercia. The area west of Piazza Nettuno is relatively sparse in monuments and only the large gothic church of San Francesco, right next to via G. Marconi, can be an incentive, to go there.