A visit in Parma must definitely foresee a glimpse of Piazza Duomo, where the
Cathedral, the Baptistery and the Bishop's Palace are to create a corner of rare
The Duomo (secc. XI-XII) is one of the highest expressions of Romanesque with a beautiful
façade and a great atmospheric interior is in the shape of a latin cross, full
of masterpieces: the most famous is certainly the frescoed dome by Correggio (Antonio
Allegri) with the Assumption of the Virgin (1526-1539) and the Deposition, the
first dated sculptural work of Benedict Antelami (1178).
The imprint of Antelami is even more evident in the Baptistery a great octagonal monument (that witnesses the most significant moment of transition
from the Romanesque to Gothic), built of Verona pink marble: the artist directed
the work of the entire building and created the plastic decoration.
A few dozen meters away from the Cathedral rises the church of San Giovanni Evangelista,
a Renaissance building (with Baroque facade and bell tower), which hosts extraordinary
paintings: among them, in particular, the dome depicting the transit of St. John,
painted by Correggio in 1520-21, and some frescoes by Parmigianino (Francesco
Mazzola) in the intrados of three chapels. To the left of the church is the entrance
to the Benedectine monastry that deserve a visit, with its charming Renaissance
cloisters, and an ancient Benedictine Spezier.
Even in Parmigianino's Madonna Steccata, splendid Renaissance style church built
in 1530-39 in Bramante style, whose greatest treasure is certainly formed by the
decorative cycle of the presbytery.
Another Correggio’s masterpiece is in St. Paul chamber: the room has an umbrella
vault divided into segments, this was formerly part of the abbess Giovanna da
Piacenza, during whose priorate the convent enjoyed a lively cultural life.
In the center, the Palazzo della Pilotta, built by the Farnese, guests the Palatine
Library, the National Archaeological Museum, the wooden Teatro Farnese (among
the most beautiful historic theaters in the world), the Bodoni Museum and the
National Gallery, certainly one of the most important Italian art galleries (Correggio,
Parmigianino, Beato Angelico, Leonardo, Cima da Conegliano, El Greek, Van Dyck,
Carracci, Sebastiano del Piombo, Tiepolo, Canaletto and so on).
A little further the neoclassical Teatro Regio, one of the most famous of Italy,
celebrates the connections between Parma and opera.
But Parma is much more.