Tag Archives: oropa

oropa in 30 seconds…

There now follows a series of gratuitous shots of the Sanctuary of Oropa dedicated to the famous (round here) Madonna Nera (Black Madonna). It is soooo fantastic in the mist and on a foggy Tuesday morning there is only us there…

Not the Black Madonna but a Black Madonna (you can catch a glimpse of the original one in the film at the bottom of the post:

…and you can buy her too…

Anyway shot some footage of the glorious emptiness – warning the following film includes holy water and nuns praying to a Black Madonna…all in 30 seconds:

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madonna blu/madonna rosa…

…Speaking of Oropa, when i go there, i tend to buy one of these small statues every year.

This wee madonna turns out to be a rather brilliant predictor of the weather. When it is sunny and/or dry, she is blue as above…and when rain comes…like today…

…she turns pink (when i take her home to Scotland she remains mostly pink…!). Works every time…honest!

oropa and madonna nera…

Oropa – i see the dome of oropa every day, weather permitting, half way up a mountain (Mucrone) near Biella, you can just see it there below in the middle of the image…

It is a sanctuary dedicated to the Madonna Nera (black Madonna). Because of this place, most of the “Mary” statues and murals (and there are a lot) in the area are black, for example this one is in a corridor in the Zegna Woolmill up in Trivero.

…and this one in a house in Chiavazza

…and you can even find her on my wrist…


Anyway Oropa is big business in the catholic cult of “Mary” trade, complete with souvenir shops, bars and restaurants and a never ending queue of religious tourism. These photos taken at dusk on Sunday are surprisingly empty as everyone is inside one of the various churches. For those of us outside, the mass given by the Pope in Rome is broadcast booming out from strategically placed speakers around the complex (hence impossible to ignore) for our listening pleasure…