La Piramide del 38° parallelo (Pyramid 38th parallel)

Motta d’Affermo is a tiny town in the province of Messina built on a hill which was chosen as a shelter by some veterans of the nearby town of Halaesa. Nearby, on top of a rocky promontory, it stands the imposing sculpture which dominates the entire surrounding landscape: we are talking about the Pyramid 38th parallel.

This particular installation coincides exactly with the thirty-eighth parallel – hence its name – and it points north-west, in direction of the Aeolian Islands.

The construction, built in 2010 by the artist Maurizio Faccioli, is not accidental. The 38th parallel is the same line that formed the boundary between North and South Korea, which is one of the most acute crisis of the last century.

Its presence, therefore, is a warning to the nowadays society, often unable to conceive the feeling of harmony.

Regarding the structure, the Pyramid of 38th is a titanic 30-meter cable tetrahedron made of “corten” steel. This material, through oxidation, gives to the pyramid a particularly attractive reddish colouration.

The work, along the western edge, has a slot that lets in the light of the sun. This ray welcomes visitors which come inside the Pyramid (the entrance is located downstream and leads in the inner part of the structure) every summer solstice, a day celebrated in many cultures as the moment of the victory of light over darkness (and therefore of life over death).

Beneath the Pyramid people use to celebrate the Rite of Light characterised by white dressed artists, musicians and thousands of ordinary citizens.

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Written by Salvatore Rocca

Translated by Marta M. Praticò

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