The Italian Chapel

Submitted by Owen McCafferty on Wed, 2009-11-18

The Italian Chapel is a masterpiece created by Italian prisoners of war on Orkney. The artwork is incredible and you really do think that you are seeing bricks, marble, etc. One of the main artists (now sadly deceased) came back to Orkney to touch up his work.

The chapel is testament to the vision of Domenico Chiocchetti, who using his artistic background, rallied his fellow inmates and built what is today one of Orkney’s most visited and loved tourist attractions and is a fitting memorial to those lost in wartime. “Photograph courtesy of the Orkney Tourist Board”. The chapel is a must see!

Today the chapel is known around the world. Some 90,000 visitors a year gaze upon the image of the Madonna and Child above the altar. There’s nothing else there, no tea rooms or souvenir shops, not even someone to collect money. Its creation and survival is one of the most inspiring stories to come out of the second world war.

It is also a remarkable example of how a faith can survive in the adversity of war, and it stands today as a symbol of peace and reconciliation after those years of conflict in World War Two.

Contact: Tel: 44(0)1856 781 268

Also read:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/belief/2009/sep/22/italian-chape…
http://www.orcadian.co.uk/features/articles/prisoners.htm
http://www.bbc.co.uk/legacies/heritage/static/highland/article_1.shtml
http://www.undiscoveredscotland.co.uk/eastmainland/italianchapel/

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