Subject 05: Medici fortress, the “Prato” and its bastion

The Medici fortress

Supervisor Mrs. Ross (F)
Students Alessia Ricciarini (I) | Maressa Markovic (D) | Zoé Caruso (L)
Maria Tondelli (I) | Ariane Hein (D) | Chiara Fattebene (L)

Our subject was to explore the fortress of Arezzo and a reflection on our notion of “landscape”.

  • Firstly, we established the markers of the fortress and the scenery. We made a type of mind map with key notions.
  • For the interview, we developed some questions with regards to the fortress.
  • The next day, we visited the Medici fortress, located on the San Donato hills. It’s the most elevated part of the city, there’s a large park named the “Prato”.
  • The specialist who guided us and showed us various monuments, was also the engineer of this fortress.
  • One of the students recorded all the explanations. Everybody took some pictures, unfortunately the engineer didn’t have enough time to respond to all our queries.
  • After the translation of the interview from Italian to French, we started making a Prezi.

Our Prezi presentation illustrates different topics which you can check out below.

The construction of the fortress:

It was erected in the 16th century to defend this Italian city. It was demolished on numerous occasions and rebuilt between 1343-1368. In 1868, it was eventually restored.

Since 2011, the fortress has been under restoration once more to render it more attractive for tourists. The city aims to make it a place of festivities.

The entrance:

To access the fortress, you must first cross a long tree-lined alley before seeing a grand metal portal with roman numerals on it.

Supplementary information on the topic

The Medici fortress of Arezzo is in the hills of San Donato, the most elevated part of the city, it is also an important marker of Italian defensive military architecture of the 16th century. Between 1343 and 1398, the fortress was demolished on several occasions and rebuilt by the Florentines. In 1868 it was restored. Since 2011 to this date it finds itself being restored again.

The Medici fortress built in the 16th century in Arezzo takes dominion over the north-eastern part of the city, at its highest point. The fortress closes off the defensive circuit of the city of Arezzo and its territories: the bastions.
The fortress has a pentagonal shape with 5 bastions at its summit presenting various dimensions for its interior and exterior parts. The centre of the fortress, formerly occupied by military housing, composes itself of an open space, a large farmhouse and a cottage. Its re-establishment and the opening of the doors to the public constitute a major cultural event worldwide as it lies at the heart of the country and encompasses a very high percentage of monuments and ancient art and museums. The multiple interventions at the Medici fortress of Arezzo have caught the attention of numerous entrepreneurs who organise various events from medieval light and sound shows to high fashion markets. The fortress is a great backdrop for leisure activities, culture and tourism.

This place shall become a new public event hub in the centre of the city and will attract numerous visitors from abroad.

The Medici fortress of Arezzo is currently under restoration. The works are a part of a general redevelopment project which aims to give the city a new, more artistic and cultural vantage point. The local administration is committed to receiving a growing influx of tourists. the restoration works should end in 2016, with the exclusion of:

  • Belvedere Bastion
  • The Roman dome and its related areas