Murals of Dozza – Dozza, Italy - Atlas Obscura

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Murals of Dozza

Dozza, Italy

Since the 1960s, this small village has invited painters to decorate its walls. 


The medieval village of Dozza sits amidst miles of vineyards just outside Bologna. The first houses date back to the ninth century, and the wall surrounding the city to 1086, when Bolognese forces conquered the village. In 1960, Dozza established the Biennale del Muro Dipinto (Biennial of the Painted Wall). It was, and still is, a manifestation of contemporary art where the painters where not working on canvas, but on the walls of the houses. 

Every two years since then, more than 200 artists create an open-air gallery along the streets and squares of the town. Artists come from around the world to join in the event, and the murals take many different forms: landscape and still life, realistic and abstract.

What makes this event special is the fact that the artists paint and discuss their work with the audience visiting the festival. The production covers more than half a century and it is also possible to see the originals sketches related to the murals in the nearby Rocca Sforzesca of Dozza.

Moreover the effort of the organizer, the Fondazione Dozza Citta’ d’arte, to promote the expressions of contemporary art has been always constant and it has been extended to forms of art different from the classic italian painting. Since 2007 infact, the Biennale is also working in the nearby town of Toscanella with numerous works of modern street art.

Know Before You Go

Visiting the city is for free and so the "open-air" gallery.

Tickets are needed to enter the museum at the Rocca Sforzesca. Check the website for prices and hours.

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