Loquis: Chiesa di Santi Maria e Sigismondo

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Chiesa di Santi Maria e Sigismondo


Published on:  2018-11-14 19:22:41

  Stories of art in Lombardy

The basilica of SSanta Maria and Sigismondo is the oldest church in Rivolta d'Adda and the historiography is unanimous in making it go back to 1030, although it is possible to speculate that arose on an existing building. Built in the central square, today it is suffocated by the buildings surrounding and its history is full of changes and stylistic changes, which have made it come to us in Romanesque style, but certainly the appearance was originally very different from the current one, just think of the false narthex that precedes the facade. older paintings are prior to 1200-1300, but also for the pictorial decorations, as well as for the entire plastic apparatus you have to be careful not to be misled by twentieth-century reconstructions.The imposing bell tower dates back to the twelfth century. Originally much lower it was altered several times over the centuries and in 1716 it was further raised and crowned with Ghibelline merlons. The last changes on the tower date back to the last century.The octagonal tiburio, which incorporates the ovoid dome, was added in the seventeenth century on the occasion of the reconstruction of the presbytery. At the end of the eighteenth century Marcellino Segré made a radical transformation into neoclassical forms adding heavy baroque stuccoing , and the church, so radically transformed and modified, arrived at the beginning of the twentieth century in a precarious state of conservation. The heavy stratifications that occurred over the centuries without any programmatic intervention and the negligence of the Church, convinced the then parish priest, Monsignor Agostino Desirelli to commission a radical restoration intervention. In August 1902 he convinced the bodies responsible for starting the work. Cesare Nava, author of the facades of the Milanese churches of San Lorenzo and of San Sepolcro in Milan, who carried out an important restructuring / demolition intervention to make the church return to "its former glory". However, the elimination of historical stratifications revealed a mostly destroyed medieval sector. This led to the drastic decision to rebuild according to the logic of "as it was where it was" the Romanesque structure. The major intervention involved the sculptures and the plastic decorations that were completely redone in style. The artist, a Giuseppe Varischi, was really able to conceal his intervention. The pictorial decoration was instead entrusted to Ernesto Rusca, former collaborator of Luca Beltrami in the works at the Castello Sforzesco and even here it is difficult to recognize the originals.

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