San Gerardo La Porta - Patrono di Potenza

Festival of the Patron Saint

A great event across faith, religious worship and tradition takes place every year.

The patron saint of Potenza, Saint Gerardo da Piacenza, is celebrated each year, on the 30th of May, when his effigy is carried in procession along the main streets of the capital. The day before, during the Historical Parade of the Turks, the sacred merges with the profane, history and legend come together and the ancient and the modern combine to give birth to one whole thing.


Gentlemen on steeds covered with drapes parade through the main streets of the city, next to commoners on small carts pulled by oxen, along with slaves, odalisques, flag-wavers, jugglers, sword throwers and other performers. This very long historical procession recalls three moments: the 19th century, with a commemoration in Piazza Sedile where the traditional Iaccara is lighted; the 16th century, at Porta Salza, where Count Alfonso de Guevara receives the silver keys of the city; and the third ‘picture’, with the procession and popular devotion to the Patron Saint in the 12th century. The Parade narrates the legend according to which, as a result of San Gerardo’s intercession, the invasion of the Turks who wanted to besiege the city was stopped.


“Lu Braccial” – Popular song dedicated to San Gerardo

Je facc’ lu braccial e nun lu nèa,
e so cuntent e so cuntent assaie.

Nun l’abbanduneragg’ mai mai,
la zappa, lu zappit e lu pagliare.

Mò m’zappa l’urticiedd’
Mò m’zappa lu seminar,
e ogni anno ‘nu purciedd
nun me l’aggia fa mai manca!

Tigne na vigna accant à la jumara
Me pare na canestra chiena d’uva

Tigne na casa n’dreta a lu pagliare
ca quann’ trase vire lu monn’ nuove:
Int’ è chiéne d’ patate,
savucicchie e vine nuovo;
chi la iàsca e chi l’ucciuòlo,
ie me sènt’ d’arricrià!

Domenica m’aggia mett’ lu vuariniedd’,
Ca aggia gì appress a la prucessiona,
ca è la festa d’ lu Prutettore
ca stà esposto sova a lu muraglione.

San Gerarde Prutettore De Putenza Generale
Gnanna fa piglià nu mal’ a chi l’anna disprezzà!

*voice of Michele di Potenza

The Roman Villa of Malvaccaro

Patrimonio culturale

In Potenza, it is certainly worth visiting the Roman Villa of Malvaccaro built in the second half of the 4th century AD, as well as the mosaico di Malvaccaro (mosaic of Malvaccaro), which decorated the interior of the villa where some precious ceramics of the 2nd-4th century were also found.


The Musmeci Bridge

Patrimonio culturale

Modern architecture is finely represented by the Musmeci Bridge, which might be a candidate for the UNESCO World Heritage List. The bridge takes its name from the engineer who built it in the late 1960s.

This architectural sight represents the ideal backdrop for avant-garde art with its elegant plasticity.

The Stabile Theatre

Patrimonio culturale

Nominated as the “Historic regional theatre” in 2014, it is considered as one of the main sights of artistic excellence in the region.

The construction started in 1856, and it was officially opened on the 26th of January 1881, on the occasion of the arrival of King Umberto I and Queen Margherita of Savoy in Potenza.

Located in a very central position in Piazza Francesco Mario Pagano, the theatre is named after local musician Francesco Stabile. Its structure, decorations and design boast features very similar to those of the San Carlo Theatre in Naples. The stalls, three levels of boxes and the gallery surround the orchestra and the stage. Its small size makes it a one-ofa-kind gem. During the year it hosts cultural events of great prestige.

Potenza, the typical cuisine

Patrimonio culturale

Not to be lost is the typical cuisine.

Simplicity and freshness are the hallmarks, starting from fresh pasta, traditionally made by hand using only two ingredients: water and flour. Handmade pasta is the undisputed star of local cuisine and flavoured by either vegetables or meat ragù.

Potenza still has a long tradition of using dairy products characterised by the production of soft cheese filled with butter, mozzarella, soft cheese, ricotta, caciocavallo and pecorino.

Among the typical products there are also the meat sausage, salami and small pieces of meat conserved in oil or lard.

National Archaeological Museum "Dinu Adamesteanu"

Patrimonio culturale

Since 2005, the prestigious Palazzo Loffredo, in the heart of Potenza historic centre, has housed the national archaeological museum of Basilicata, named after Dinu Adamesteanu, the Romanian archaeologist who was the first head of the archaeological heritage office of Basilicata region (1964-1977).
The museum boasts an exhibition space of over two thousand square metres, where the story of an ancient past is narrated. Two floors, featuring 22 rooms and 8 sections, illustrate the region’s cultural evolution, from the period preceding Greek colonisation to the Roman conquest.

[:it]Museo Archeologico Provinciale Potenza[:]

The Provincial Archaeological Museum of Potenza

Patrimonio culturale

The museo archeologico provinciale (provincial archaeological museum) of Potenza retains the historical memory of the area and guides visitors through thediscovery of the uses, cults and traditions of the peoples who had settled in Basilicata, from the Greek colonisation to the late Imperial Age. The museum’s permanent collection on the first floor includes remains found in the Greek colony of Metaponto, in the indigenous sites of the area surrounding Potenza and the Romanised inland towns. It hosts temporary exhibitions on archaeology, modern and contemporary art, with guided tours and educational activities.

The Pinacoteca Provinciale of Potenza

Patrimonio culturale

Located near the Provincial Archaeological Museum, in the old town district of Santa Maria, the Pinacoteca Provinciale of Potenza (Potenza public art gallery) houses very interesting exhibitions.

Currently you can visit the temporary exhibition of paintings and sculptures dedicated to Concetto Valente, which includes part of the collection of paintings and sculptures owned by the Province of Potenza, featuring works of art dating back to the 19th century. Among the artists, really noteworthy are Di Chirico, Brando, Tedesco, Mona and La Creta.

The exhibition also includes works by contemporary artists such as Guerricchio, Claps and Squitieri. The room dedicated to the 20th century hosts artworks by Carlo Levi, Fausto Pirandello and Renato Guttuso. A permanent collection dedicated to the artist Rocco Falciano, born in Potenza, has been recently set up at the ground floor, thanks to the donation of the artist’s most significant works by his family.

Learn more on the website of the province of Potenza

The Diocesan Museum of Potenza

Patrimonio culturale

The former Seminary, behind the Cathedral of San Gerardo, is home to the diocesan museum of Potenza. The museum offers
its visitors one of the most interesting collections of sacred objects in the region. Through a journey between art and faith, the museum boasts a rich selection of sa- cred silverware and paintings.


The City Gallery and Cappella dei Celestini in Potenza

Patrimonio culturale

Included among the most important exhibition spaces of the regional capital, thanks to their significant architectural and historical value, they are both located within the art historical and splendid building of Palazzo Loffredo.

The building that hosts the city gallery, which also includes the Cappella dei Celestini, is considered to be one of the rare examples of noble palaces in Potenza.

Both usually host figurative arts exhibitions and collections of Italian and European artists, always attracting a significant number of visitors.