San Pietro a Gemonio

San Pietro a Gemonio and the Salvini Museum in Cocquio Trevisago

San Pietro a Gemonio and the Salvini Museum in Cocquio Trevisago

Halfway between the Lake of Varese and Lake Maggiore, not far from the Valcuvia valley, there are places of cultural interest that are also very important to people who wish to spend a holiday cycling.

The ancient church of St. Peter, for example, is a true treasure of Romanesque art, located in the town of Gemonio.

Probably founded in the Longobard period, the church was rebuilt in the 10th century with a single nave. Subsequently, the bell tower and the aisles were added. The interior is richly frescoed with works dating back to the 14th and 15th centuries.

The medieval altar presents exquisite decorations and dates back to the 10th century. Also in Gemonio, the Bodini Museum in the village deserves a visit: it houses a collection of works by Floriano Bodini, a very famous local sculptor who was born in Gemonio in 1933.  

About two kilometres away in the town of Cocquio Trevisago, there is the Mulino-Museo, the birthplace of the painter Innocente Salvini (Cocquio Trevisago 1889 - 1979). The building is a rare example of industrial archaeology from the 17th century, embellished by the remains of an ancient medieval tower and characterized by two wheels and by a series of gears that are perfectly functional and moved by a nearby stream, the Viganella Torrent.

In this restfully quiet corner at the border between the towns of Cocquio Trevisago and Gemonio, Salvini, a strongly expressionist artist, lived and worked his entire life, drawing inspiration from the surrounding landscape and populating it with frugal faces and humble figures, witnesses of a rural civilization that has disappeared in modern times.

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