This building in the Italian city of Turin was built between 1863 and 1889, and by then at 167 meters high it was the tallest building in the city, and not has been surpassed by no other until this 21st century.
Its name is due to two factors. First to its colossal appearance and second to the person who designed it, the architect Alessandro Antonelli. Who was originally commissioned to build a synagogue, but finally made a unique work that has had various uses throughout its history.
Mole Antonelliana of Turin
The work, initially built entirely of masonry, is something very peculiar, and a unique eclectic mix that uses elements of neoclassical art as well as Neo-Gothic, and at the same time it does not renounce the modernity of the industrial architecture at the end of the 19th century.
The lower part is a square-shaped base with a side of 50 meters, and it opens up like a 6-column portico of classical inspiration. While the rest of the facades are pure austerity, alternating pilasters, cornices and glass windows at various heights. All this is the basis for a gigantic dome also with a square base and tremendously elongated, which goes beyond 80 meters.
It is a dome built with convex masonry walls. The base of it is narrowerthan the building in plan, and of course in height, that area has been reduced enormously. There appears a pavilion, where the motifs of classical architecture that exist in the lower area can be seen again. Of course, here it looks like a model.
However, it must be said that this singular pavilion is halfway up the building. And from inside you can get there by elevator, which allows you to see the interior of the very peculiar dome of the Mole Antonelliana.
As we say this is half of the development of the construction, since from here a lantern rises and the subsequent needle, which immediately links the Mole with the great Gothic cathedrals, especially French ones like Strasbourg, Reims or Amiens. Even German like the ones in Cologne, but not so much the Italian Gothic cathedrals where that idea of raising the temples to the heights didn't exist.
In short, this is a building that has become the symbol of this city. It has never finished having a clear use, although for a few years it has been the headquarters of a museum dedicated to cinema. Even so, its identification with Turin is total, perhaps not so much because of its supposed beauty, but rather because of its constructive daring, its enormous dimensions and even because of the extravagance of its forms.