Triumphs and Laments by William Kentridge (born 1955) is a monumental frieze (550 metres long and 10 metres high), drawn in 2016 along the banks of the Tiber River in Rome, created with a technique ephemeral and fragile. Rome’s history is shown through an imposing series of figures in a peculiar space which is ruled by emotive memory. This frieze shows the procession of 120 figures, stencilled on the walls between Ponte Sisto and Ponte Mazzini; it was created by removing portions of the grime that has accumulated on the travertine over the centuries.
This learning scenario has been developed during the English version of the “Europeana in your classroom: building 21st-century competences with digital cultural heritage” online course. The course aimed to improve teachers’ understanding of cultural heritage in order to efficiently integrate it into their lessons and practices. The courses can be accessed here.
Authors: Paola Torniai
Age of students: 16-17
Subject and topic: Art History (Archeology, Modern Art, Contemporary Art), History, Literature, Cinema History
By the end of the lesson, students should be able to verbalize connections between Rome’s history and the series of symbols, archetypes and events which have been freely reinterpreted by Kentridge in his masterpiece.