Question: Where in the world does a globe at the edge of the sea split in half to reveal a new Earth?
Answer: Sfera Grande di Pomodoro in Pesaro, Italy
The seaside commune of Pesaro, Italy is known for its glittering beaches, bicycling routes, and hillside parks, but one landmark that truly stands out in this resort town is its Sphere Within a Sphere sculpture. Balancing on the edge of the Adriatic Sea, this golden globe is the second installation of a world-famous sculpture series by Italian sculptor Arnaldo Pomodoro.
Known as “Sfera con Sfera” which translates to “Sphere Within a Sphere”, these globe-shaped sculptures are located around the world—including in Vatican City, Trinity College in Dublin, the U.N. Headquarters in New York City, and the Hakone Open Air Museum in Tokyo. Each sculpture depicts a large metal sphere with a cracked surface and a cracked orb on the inside. The outside is smooth and bronze, but when you look closer, the interior layers are filled with what appears to be the gears and inner workings of a machine. Each version of the sphere has different detailed mechanisms which symbolize the complexities of the world that lies beneath a perfect surface. Pomodoro has also described that the sculptures were meant to represent the emergence of a new world.
With such notable locations displaying these sculptures, how did Pesaro snag the second sphere created? The first sculpture in Pomodoro’s series was designed for Vatican City, and following the success of this installation, he created a second version—which is the largest of all the spheres. This one was shown at the Montreal Expo in 1967, and afterward, Pomodoro decided to donate it to Pesaro in 1971. He had previously worked as a consultant for the restoration of the city’s public buildings in the mid-1950s and wanted to contribute his artwork to this ocean-side oasis.
In the region of Le Marche, Pesaro has one of the most important cultural scenes (more on that below), and the sculpture is an artistic fixture in the community. Visitors to this seaside commune look upon the intricacies of the sphere and are reminded of the many complexities of the world in which we live.
7 More Treasures of Pesaro, Italy:
- One of the most spectacular works of architecture in the city is the Ruggeri House which is laced with ornate floral detailing all over the façade. The home was constructed for the entrepreneur Oreste Ruggeri and his family as a summer retreat. Today its beautiful stucco exterior makes it a must-see in the city.
- Pesaro is nicknamed the “Cycling City” due to its extensive network of 494 bicycling paths that are open for everyone to explore.
- Pesaro was the birthplace of the world-famous opera composer Gioachino Rossini, and each year the city hosts the Rossini Opera Festival at a theater named in the composer’s honor. The theater, known as Teatro Rossini, welcomes visitors each year from around the world to hear his music. His former house also serves as a museum and is filled with his manifestoes, portraits, and some instruments.
- At the center of Pesaro’s historic old town, the Piazza del Popola is a quintessential Italian square complete with a baroque water fountain with stone sculptures and water nymphs. The square features the city’s most important buildings, including the Ducal Palace—a Renaissance-era estate.
- Another one of Pesaro’s stunning palaces is known as Villa Caprile. This baroque palace is located in the rural outskirts of Pesaro and was constructed in 1640 as the summer house of the marquis Giovanni Mosca. The estate, which is filled with terraced gardens and waterworks, is now home to the Antonio Cecchi Agricultural Technical Institute.
- One of Pesaro’s most popular exports is motorcycles made by the famous Morbidelli brand. In the city, the Morbidelli Museum showcases their most prestigious bikes and memorabilia. Here, you can see antique motorbikes from as far back as the early 1900s all the way through the 1980s.
- Pesaro is also home to Monte San Bartolo natural park which has rugged cliffside views of the Adriatic and sweeping natural plains. The park has many footpaths and trails offering dramatic views of the water below.
Witness the fascinating Sfera Grande di Pomodoro sculpture as well as the abundance of other treasures in Pesaro when you travel aboard our Undiscovered Adriatic: Eastern Italy, Venice, Puglia & Malta Small Ship Adventure.