The triumph of 1930s rationalism
Brescia's Piazza della Vittoria is one of the most significant examples of architecture from the fascist period and the post-WWII period. Built between 1927 and 1932 by architect and town planner Marcello Piacentini, it stands on the ashes of the Pescherie district, part of the medieval old town demolished to make way for the new urban plan of rationalist conception.
Designed in an L-shape, the square houses the tall INA Torrione, Istituto Nazionale Assicurazioni (National Insurance Institute), on its inner right angle, with its 15 floors and 57.25 m height it is the first skyscraper built in Italy and among the very first in Europe. To the north stands the large Post Office Building, with its white-ochre cladding. Completing the space is the Revolution Tower, with a clock and, in the past, a bas-relief depicting Mussolini on horseback. After WWII, it was dismantled along with other elements representative of fascist ideology, including a large sculpture by Arturo Dazzi, entitled “The Fascist Era”, popularly known as the “Bigio”.
Below the tower is the Arengario, made of red stone from Tolmezzo, used as a stage for orators during town meetings and decorated with a cycle of nine marble slabs in bas-relief. Each of them depicts, in chronological order, a salient moment or character in the city's history. The square is home to an antiques market every second Sunday of the month.