Corso Repubblica

Eastern Sardinia

WWII, the creation of the atomic bomb, the miners strikes of the Iglesiente, the evils of capitalism, women’s liberation – Orgosolo is a giant canvas for emotionally charged graffiti. The majority of murals line the main thoroughfare, Corso Repubblica, and were initiated by Professor Francesco del Casino in 1975 as a school project to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Liberation of Italy. There are now some 200 murals, many of them executed by Casino. Other notable artists include Pasquale Buesca and Vincenzo Floris.

The styles vary wildly according to the artists: some are naturalistic, others are like cartoons, and some, such as those on the Fotostudio Kikinu, are wonderfully reminiscent of Picasso. Like satirical caricatures, they depict all the big political events of the 20th and 21st centuries and vividly document the struggle of the underdog in the face of a powerful, and sometimes corrupt, establishment. Italy’s own political failings are writ large, including the corruption of the Cassa del Mezzogiorno and Prime Minister Giulio Andreotti’s trials for collusion with the Mafia, where speech bubbles mock his court refrain of ‘I don’t remember’. Even more interesting are the murals depicting recent events. On the corner of Via Monni there are portrayals of the destruction of the two World Trade Center towers (dated 28 September 2001) and the fall of Baghdad (dated 17 April 2003).

South of Corso Repubblica, the corner of Via Morti di Bugerru and Via Gramsci is festooned with colourful depictions of revolutionary fighter Che Guevara and the fathers of Communism: Marx, Engels and Lenin.

For a self-guided tour of the murals, get a multilingual audio guide from Orgosolo's tourist office.

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