AccessibilitàAccessibilitàAccessibilità

La Rete Museale della Citta Metropolitana di Catania

 

Permanent exhibition of ancient maps of Sicily / La Gumina Collection

 
 
 
 
Information

This extraordinary collection of ancient geographical maps is aimed to promote the reconstruction of an aspect of the identity of our region and the enhancement of documents of the highest historical - artistic value, of highest importance for geostorical research, for the studies of visual anthropology related to our region and for the analysis of the sociological - literary topos of the 'Journey to Sicily,' which was an essential phase of the Gran Tour of Europe from the late 18th century to the last century, owing to its potential and desirable use in school teaching and to the beauty of its iconological and decorative heritage.

Visiting days

Opening days from 1 January to 31 December
from Tuesday to Saturday
from 09.00 a.m. to 5.00 p.m. (last admission at 4.30 pm)

Closed:
every Sunday and every Monday and all bank holidays.


Calendar of opening hours – closing and opening hours may vary.
Visitors are kindly invited to wait for confirmation before their visit by calling 095.4011929 and / or consulting the press releases by clicking here.

For reservations and information call Ph. No.0954013072

Tourist Information Point (via Etnea, 63, Catania)
Ph. No. 095 4014070

U.R.P Public Relations Office (via Etnea, 67, Catania)
Ph. No. 095 4011502/18 and toll-free number 800551485

Director of the III Service III Department ‘ Productive-economic Activities and Transports’
Dott.ssa Diane Litrico
Via Nuovaluce 67a, Tremestieri Etneo (CT)

 
HOW TO GET THERE

The exhibition is sited in Hall E7 inside the "Le Ciminiere" Exhibition Center, Piazzale Rocco Chinnici / Viale Africa, near the bus station, the train station, the Port of Catania and it is easily reachable on foot from the old town and from different areas of the city.

 
Info

Ph. No. 095 4013072

Top page

History and seat
History

The Cartographic La Gumina" collection, by Catania Metropolitan City, was mounted in permanent exhibition in 2005; it is a collection of 143 geographical maps of Sicily produced between the fifteenth and the nineteenth centuries (woodcuts and chalcographs, from 1478 to 1842). 

Seat

The exhibition is sited in Hall E7 inside the "Le Ciminiere" Exhibition Center

Top page

 
The exhibition
La Gumina Collection

"The island holds a unique role in the history of geography: with its varied representation or rather with its varied orientation in the ancient and modern maps, it faithfully reflects the progress of geography through the ages (Cosimo Bertacchi) . The museum's value of the exhibition consists in allowing visitors to get a reading of the map representation of the Sicilian territory in its historical as well as in its strictly geographical connotations.

The exhibition consists of six different sections that trace the evolution of cartographic representation from Ptolemaic papers to the elaborations of Gastaldi, Mercatore, the inventor of the isogonic cylindrical projection, Magini, Sanson, Delisle, Daidone, Schmettau.

Collezione La GuminaThe first section, “Between mathematics and astronomy, nautical empiricism and local scholars”, illustrates the arduous paths of the XVI century’s cartography,which comes out of the intertwining of the data inferred from the Ptolemaic maps with the empirical geography of charts, astronomy and mathematics.

Collezione La GuminaThe second section, “Sicilia antiqua”, is a collection of "historical" maps, quite common between the seventeenth and the eighteenth centuries, containing names of cities, reliefs, rivers found in the sources by experts of ancient topography. "These scholars also went to the original sites to explore them directly and tried to recognize certain elements based on literary descriptions, coins and inscriptions, together with the etymological analysis of modern names to find traces of the ancient ones" (Paolo Militello) .
Worthy of note: a map of Ortelio (1584) showing topographical discoveries by Tomaso Fazello’s philological explanations; a map by Filippo Cluverio (1619) with Greek and Latin toponyms; a map by Guillaume Delisle (1714) with the layout of Roman road networks and routes; a group of maps which provided the Duke of Serradifalco with the materials for the compilation of the first archaeological map of Sicily in 1842..


The third section, “From the Astronomer to the Topographer”, documents the development of the cartographic industry in the XVII century, which became widespread especially in Holland and was characterised by a realistic taste and a focus on detail in the reproduction of territorial emergencies. " Mercatore's Sicily is the model of many cartographers even though Magini’s map begins to have a wider diffusion.The maps become status symbols and are enriched with cartouches, dedications and sometimes they include plans of the main cities like Palermo, Catania and Messina "(...). In the eighteenth century a new cartographic concept, topography, is established. (...). Military representation becomes extremelly popular: Engineer Schmettau's paper is 'corrected' by the topographical office of Palermo (...) and by the court of Naples ". (Paolo Militello). (...) The Cartography of the age also provides us with commercial, administrative, economic and statistical-demographic information, with a number of publications belonging to the typology of the atlas (such as the Atlas of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies by Benedetto Marzolla,1832).Collezione La Gumina

The third section, “From the Astronomer to the Topographer”, documents the development of the cartographic industry in the XVII century, which became widespread especially in Holland and was characterised by a realistic taste and a focus on detail in the reproduction of territorial emergencies. " Mercatore's Sicily is the model of many cartographers even though Magini’s map begins to have a wider diffusion.The maps become status symbols and are enriched with cartouches, dedications and sometimes they include plans of the main cities like Palermo, Catania and Messina "(...). In the eighteenth century a new cartographic concept, topography, is established. (...). Military representation becomes extremelly popular: Engineer Schmettau's paper is 'corrected' by the topographical office of Palermo (...) and by the court of Naples ". (Paolo Militello). (...) The Cartography of the age also provides us with commercial, administrative, economic and statistical-demographic information, with a number of publications belonging to the typology of the atlas (such as the Atlas of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies by Benedetto Marzolla,1832).

 

Collezione La GuminaThe fourth section, “Sacred Sicily”, is an itinerary among the maps dedicated to the three Capuchin provinces of Palermo, Messina and Syracuse. The maps, showing the localization of convents in the island,are taken from the Corographica descriptio provinciarum et conventuum Fratrum Minorum S. Francisci Capucinorum, by Giovanni da Moncalieri, 1649.
 
The fifth section is dedicated to the nautical maps. This kind of maps were widespread since the thirteenth century and known as Portolani;they assemble papers showing the direction lines of the winds and are rich in decorative elements such as boats, ships and unfurled sails.

The sixth section, called Atlas Minor, shows maps dating back to the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries which are mainly characterized by a scientific precision and they are printed by Dutch publishers "(Valeria La Paglia).

Top page

 
Activities and Services
General Services

Reception, information and reservations,catalog for sale, description of the exhibition itinerary with guided tour, guide to the the Virtual Museum System / Museum itineraries of the territory, applications for authorization of photographic and cinematographic shooting

Visitors tour

When the group's number unit exceeds ten units, booking is appreciated.

The number of admissible units for each visit is 25 persons.

School visits

They need to be booked at Ph.No. 0954013072 in order to specify the times and the type of visit.

The number of admissible units for each visit is 25 persons.

Cultural assistance services

Integration to bibliographic, audiovisual, site and historical orientation and identification and deepening of the research paths already provided by teachers for students of all levels and schools, university students, students of Fine Arts Academies, Conservatories and University High Schools , undergraduates and trainees. The Service provides collaboration to scholars, researchers and specialists, as well as to cultural institutions and institutes.