“Centrifugo” – Umberto Cavenago

Umberto Cavenago, “Centrifugo”, 2020, Peccioli, Viale Risorgimento

Once a year, Peccioli becomes an important destination for cycling, as the traditional “Coppa Sabatini” is held in its territory, an annual race since 1952. For this reason, the municipal administration of Peccioli asked Umberto Cavenago to create a work on this theme. For the positioning of the sculpture, a particularly significant area for the competition was indicated: the space delimited by a hairpin bend that cyclists tackle uphill. It is just a few hundred meters from the finish, near the center of Peccioli.

Made in Cor-Ten steel, Centrifugal is almost a parallelepiped, empty inside, offset in its shape and longitudinally decomposed (so that it can easily bend thirty degrees inside the bend). It lies on four large wheels: two on the ground and two almost raised from the ground due to the inclination.

The shape of the work, although characterized by a minimal essentiality, unequivocally recalls the cycling race, evoking with its position and its location the figure of the racer inclined in the bed.

The title of the work refers to the centrifugal force that comes into play when a vehicle speeds along a curve. A physical factor that even a runner must take into account: the cyclist bends in the curvilinear section with his bicycle inwards to compensate for the push toward the outside.

The inclination of Centrifugal becomes visually effective when the work is observed in the moment when the passage of the racers takes place in that precise stretch of the path. It is at that point that Centrifugal ideally enters the race, at the moment when its position coincides with that of the cyclists who race parallel to it.

More info: Fondazione Peccioliper


“Rovo” – Voci Itinerary

Vittorio Corsini, Bramble Bush, 2018, steel, enamel, neon light and narrator’s voice, Fabbrica, Church of Santi Rocco e Sebastiano

The arson, written by Laura Pugno, is the story of Pietro, a man who sets fires because he is convinced to find the face of his missing daughter among the flames. “He knew it was the last time, that by setting that fire – somehow, he knew – he would die, though even now, on the church lawn, with the moist below and the sky above, his burns were not fatal.

The altar of the Church of Saints Rocco and Sebastiano in Fabbrica is surrounded by an intertwining of branches and leaves. At sitting on one of the benches, the bush lights up with the red of the fire and the author’s voice spreads.

Vittorio Corsini: The story becomes part of the community; the insanity is understood and therefore it becomes acceptable. This is why the altar, the center of the church, is set on fire.

Tiziano Scarpa: “… the lights turn on…  simulating the color of the flames… as if it were an ancestral, biblical, Old Testament altar: the burning bush, the revelation that burns without being consumed… It is the altar itself that sacrifices itself, becoming a victim…: so that its luminous consumption, stared at by the believers, arouses revealing images, hallucinations more real than visual perception”.

Pietro Gaglianò:  The red light that ignites the steel bush … is made of the same matter as the fire that pervades the story… of the Marian gown, of the evangelical passion and of the tragically human passion, without the same assurance of salvation “.

This work is part of the artistic and literary itinerary “Voci”

More info: Fondazione Peccioliper

“Tra” – Voci Itinerary

Vittorio Corsini, “Tra”, 2018, wood, steel, marble, glass and narrator’s voice, Ghizzano, Oratory of Santissima Annunziata

Corsini places two chairs and a statuary marble sculpture on the back of the Oratory of Santissima Annunziata in Ghizzano, in order to prepare people to listen to Parazzoli’s narration, Before the night. The chairs recreate the intimate and private atmosphere that characterizes the conversation between the two main characters of the story: “…my private oratory. Here, peace reigns. Do you want to know what these walls were covered with before this colony of Saints proliferated? Books, only books, now useless books. “

Tiziano Scarpa: “Vittorio Corsini decided to play this story of family mourning by installing two chairs, facing one other… In the middle, he also placed a kind of marble column, fluted… There on top is a pile of very red glass drops; like rosary beads, hemoglobular marbles. I listen to the story while staring at them, because welcoming a story is contemplating the freeze-dried experience of others, coagulated blood that is cared for, polished, made to shine”.

Pietro Gaglianò: A series of dialogues between apparitions unfold in the Oratory of Santissima Annunziata in Ghizzano. Behind the altar … a wooden Annunciation from the late fourteenth century … Two figures, spiritually stretched towards the sky, are reflected onto the two chairs installed by Corsini, also made of wood … and it is easy to imagine on them the conversation between the two characters … The same exchange, poised between salvation and the inconceivable, is multiplied in the collection of ex-votos kept in the church; all this is renewed in the marble sculpture, consisting of two drums of non-congruent columns with a handful of red beads on the top…

The work is part of the Voci artistic-literary itinerary

More info: Peccioliper Foundation

Archaeological site of Santa Mustiola

The story was so special that it certainly deserved a look. Some men, who grew up in the few houses surrounding the site, reported that when they were little they used to play in the grove on the hill and they frequently found skulls. So, it was decided to proceed with a first inspection, which initially did not give any positive feedback. So much so that the participants in the reconnaissance decided to leave the hill, obviously disappointed. Just as they descended, however, one of them turned and glimpsed two or three stones emerging from the ground. They decided to approach and dig around them, quickly confirming the presence of significant stones.

The consultation of some documents confirmed the presence of a small church dedicated to Santa Mustiola right on that small hill. Since this hill is called “Mustarola”, a first hypothesis was formulated: perhaps the identified stones made up a wall of the church, although this was not very compatible with the location (too low compared to the top of the hill). The more the excavation widens and deepens, the clearer it appears to archaeologists that they are dealing with a wall made with different construction techniques. The upper part is a later reconstruction, with stones of different size and color and with a lot of lime, while the lower ones are more homogeneous and straight. All was left to do was proceeding in the other direction, to evaluate thickness. After digging towards the inside of the hill, a floor was found, with a certainly intriguing feature. It was undoubtedly a floor of cocciopesto, a conglomerate of mortar, stones and crumbled bricks, a typical construction that the Romans used as a waterproof coating in their tanks and swimming pools. So, the excavation continues with renewed enthusiasm towards the hill and a very high concentration of ceramics is found. Non-medieval material, but almost exclusively datable between the 5th and the 7th centuries. Ceramics are very useful for determining dates and geographical locations, if you have the ability and the good luck to find precise comparisons. In this case the comparison was made with a little jug called “orciolo” produced in Fiesole, which has a peculiar engraving and coloring, typical of the Longobard workshops in Fiesole and widely documented by archaeological finds. This element therefore provides certainty: here on this hill was a Longobard settlement.

Evidently, whoever inhabited the hill had used the Roman cistern as if it were a dumpster. As a matter of fact, together with the numerous ceramic finds, remains of meals were also found, with slaughtered bones. The work of cleaning the cistern goes on accurately and the perimeter wall comes to light with two preserved corners. The wall, found with a little luck on the day of the first inspection, perhaps served as a support for the ground but also as a ground front for water. The presence of a Roman cistern here, in the open countryside, a unique case outside towns, confirmed the importance of the road for trades; a confirmation reinforced by the discovery of remains of amphorae from all over the Mediterranean Sea, as evidence of the high economic and social importance of those who lived here.

The hill Mustarola, so small and so far from the central places of history, provides another surprise. One of the finds is an extremely particular table ceramic with a closed shape. It is a production called “sealed earth”, of Tunisian production, with a pouring spout, rarely found in Italian archaeological contexts, which therefore confirms the high socio-economic level of the site. With the fall of the Roman Empire, the defenses that had protected the territories of the empire until then gradually fell and the Longobards arrived in Peccioli; here, on this hill, a small military post was built. The road, analyzed from the archaeological point of view, seems to draw a border between the Byzantine possessions, so Volterra, and the Longobard territory pertaining to the Duchy of Lucca.

In the following centuries, a church was built on top of the remains of the military post. The few people who were around the hill in the Longobard era must have thrown all the scraps of their stay, as mentioned, in the Roman cistern. With the end of the Longobard domination in the 8th century, the archaeological traces end: the “mystery” of three hundred years of “darkness” starts now. Suddenly, in the early years of the 11th century, written sources indicate that a little shrine already exists here, in a place called Santa Mustiola. So, something consecrated, which belonged to the abbey of Sesto di Lucca.

It is precisely the name Mustiola, a saint venerated in Chiusi (the other Longobard duchy in Tuscany), which suggests that the Longobards may have built a small altar here, which was then resumed and enlarged in the Middle Ages. The shrine was transformed into a small church, about fifteen meters long, built right on the top of the hill.

In the upper part you can see one of the walls of the church, built with the typical construction technique of the Romanesque churches of our territories. With the excavation going on, confirmation of the stories of the villagers also came out: there are various burials throughout the church area. Although the church was small, it was a very busy one, being on a road walked by pilgrims traveling towards the Francigena pilgrim route. Even in this case, confirmation comes from the finds: coins from Lucca, Florence, Pisa and Siena found during the excavation. From the position of the bones, it was deduced that the tombs were opened and used several times, as is often the case. The internal part of the church, along the perimeter walls, was considered privileged, dedicated to people of the highest rank.


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Amphitheater Fonte Mazzola

The great success of large shows in the main square in Peccioli originated the desire and need for a space that could accommodate over 2000 people. So, an amphitheater was realized in 2007. Built with tuff slabs anchored to the ground in a way meant to exclude the use of cement, its architecture recalls the one of ancient Greek theatres. To make the scenic design even more evocative, one of the statues of Presences is located here, huge human figures in polystyrene and polyurethane foam covered in cement fiber. Nearby, the Town Library and the Archive Fonte Mazzola: inaugurated in 2019, it houses the books and contents of the Mediateca founded in 2000 and a collection of 9,000 volumes by professor Arnaldo Nesti. The country road of Le Serre starts from here. Teatro di Fonte Mazzola, built outside the old center of the town and bordering the estate Le Serre, hosts events and shows including the 11 Lune Festival every summer.

“Alba” by Vittorio Corsini

Vittorio Corsini, Alba, 2002, Peccioli, Hotel Portavaldera

The lighting runs along the edges of the walls: it is “Alba“, a work by Vittorio Corsini. From the moment it is switched on, the brightness gradually increases and invades the surrounding furniture. The environment is denaturalized by light, the space-time coordinates seem to be removed and the effect of isolation exaggerated.

Taken together it creates a place for thought and reflection. While in Alba an upward outburst is implicit in the same concept foreshadowed in the title, like in the slow explosion of light, in Sed necesse est the accuracy of architectural design condenses the interest in intellectual knowledge: the theoretical path, understood as the basis through which human culture has developed, constitutes the necessary basis that informs our existence and our doing.

More info: Archive of Fondazione Peccioliper

Acropolis and Fountain, installations by Vittorio Messina in Castellaccia

Castellaccia is the highest point in the town center of Peccioli, the location of an ancient fortress, part of a medieval castle, probably formed by two fortified towers, as we can find in the coat of arms of the Municipality of Peccioli and in the medallion of the mantle of the local patron San Verano. In 1993, the artist Vittorio Messina created the work “Acropolis”: alluding to the importance of religious facilities in the ancient world, usually located at the highest point of a city, the artist renders the memory and historical importance of a fundamental place for the history of Peccioli. At the base of Castellaccia is another work by the same artist: “Fontana”, a reference to the presence of sources for purification at sanctuaries.

Vittorio Messina, Acropolis, 1993, marble and wood, Peccioli, Castellaccia

Acropolis is a work consisting of six identical architectural elements, arranged in a circle: six columns with a square base, covered by Carrara marble slabs, topped by horizontally placed wooden beams. The name of the work indicates a fortified city of ancient Greece, which shares with the place in Peccioli the elevated position and the ancient destination of the hill. Today the wooden parts are no longer present, but you can still see the linchpins that fixed them to the columns. The artist’s intention was to give a plastic representation of their endurance over time till the end, by contrasting them with a more durable material, marble. At a later stage, Messina intervened in the work by building a sort of central cell of tufa blocks, a material capable of retaining water and changing over time.

Vittorio Messina, Fontana, 1994, marble and wood, Peccioli, atrium to Castellaccia

At the base of the access staircase that leads to the Acropolis is an atrium in which the work Fontana was built, consisting of a long basin made from a monolith. At the apex of a clay brick wall is a tympanum, from which water flows into the basin below. The signs of the time complete the work, symbolizing the passing of time as a metaphor for life. The mark on the wall resembles a tire rut in the mud.

More info: Peccioliper Foundation Archive

Vittorio Messina, Acropolis, 1993, marble and wood, Peccioli, Castellaccia


After leaving Castellaccia in the direction of the Multipurpose Center it is possible to admire other important works placed in the old center of Peccioli: “The Temple of the Wind” by Angelo Casciello, “Light Mood”, “In Peccioli Lux” and “Tribute to Giorgio Gremignai” by Vittorio Corsini and “Multipurpose Sign” by Angelo Casciello.

Going on towards Piazza del Carmine, you reach the Archaeological Museum and the Church of Madonna del Carmine; here is one of the installations of the project “Voices”: original stories of six of the most famous contemporary Italian writers – Laura Bosio, Mauro Covacich, Maurizio de Giovanni, Romano De Marco, Ferruccio Parazzoli, Laura Pugno – and the artistic practice of Vittorio Corsini, who gave voice and shape to six new permanent installations, starting from Peccioli, winding through the surrounding villages and creating unexpected itineraries.

By motorcycle in the Tuscan hills

Visitare il territorio di Peccioli in moto è una esperienza piacevole.
Divertenti da percorrere, sicure, fresche e ombreggiate in estate, le strade che collegano i borghi si prestano ad essere percorse in moto e permettono in brevi tappe di raggiungere i luoghi più interessanti nei quali scoprire panorami, architetture medievali ma anche beni culturali e di interesse storico, senza dimenticare le installazioni di opere d’arte contemporanea che negli ultimi trent’anni hanno trasformato il territorio di Peccioli in un museo a cielo aperto.
L’itinerario che vi proponiamo è suddiviso in 9 tappe e può essere percorso in una giornata. Ogni tappa è lunga tra i 5 e i 10 Km ed è percorribile con una andatura da passeggio in circa 15/20 minuti, tutti in strade di campagna a basso traffico.

Informazioni generali

In breve: 45Km circa, strade di campagna a basso traffico, 7 borghi, opere di interesse culturale e artistico
Stazione di servizio: strada provinciale La Fila
Elettrauto, gommista, meccanico: area industriale La Fila
Moto officina: Peccioli centro
Motoclub Valdera: www.facebook.com/motoclubvaldera

1° tappa – Peccioli

Coordinate GPS: 43.54764118024735, 10.720366286391279
La prima tappa è a Peccioli dove le moto possono essere lasciate al parcheggio multipiano dal quale con un comodo ascensore si arriva direttamente nel centro storico.
Usciti dall’ascensore troverete alla vostra sinistra la Passerella Tuttofuoco con l’opera Endless Sunset mentre incamminandovi verso il centro sarete accolti dallo “Sguardo di Peccioli”, opera di Vittorio Corsini e poi dalla Pieve di San Verano che vi suggeriamo di visitare.
Sempre nella zona della Pieve e di Piazza del Popolo potete ammirare riproduzioni del Tabernacolo di Benozzo Gozzoli e visitare il Museo di Palazzo Pretorio mentre percorrendo Via Roma verso Piazza del Carmine vi consigliamo di scendere nei chiassi resi unici dalle installazioni “Chiassi a fil di luce”.
Altro suggerimento prima di arrivare alla Chiesa della Madonna del Carmine, la Castellaccia, punto panoramico impreziosito dalle installazione di Vittorio Messina.

2° tappa – Legoli

Distanza: 10Km
Coordinate GPS: 43.571743507022276, 10.795212507714604
Indicazioni stradali: Peccioli >> SP41 >> SP11 >> Via di Legoli >> Legoli

Uscendo dal parcheggio multipiano a destra e percorrendo la strada SP41 che esce da Peccioli, si arriva alla frazione di Legoli dove è possibile visitare il piccolo borgo nel quale si trovano la Pieve dei Santi Giusto e Bartolomeo, l’installazione “Quattro uomini muti” e, nella vicina Cappella di Santa Caterina, il Tabernacolo di Benozzo Gozzoli, opera del grande pittore fiorentino che soggiornò a Legoli tra il 1479 e il 1480.
Molto comodo il parcheggio nella piazza centrale dal quale a piedi si può entrare direttamente nel borgo e salire fino alla Pieve.

3° tappa – Triangolo Verde, installazioni di Naturaliter e David Tremlett

Distanza: 6Km
Coordinate GPS: 43.56212469429096, 10.8060994659228

Indicazioni stradali: Legoli >> Via Ripalta >> Via di Monti >> Triangolo Verde
La terza tappa di questo viaggio raggiunge il Triangolo Verde, situato nella zona dell’Impianto di Trattamento e Smaltimento rifiuti Belvedere S.p.A. di Legoli, dal quale è possibile ammirare le installazioni di Naturaliter e Tremlett che si trovano appunto all’interno dell’impianto.
Data la particolarità del luogo è possibile accedere solo su prenotazione contattando la segreteria della Belvedere S.p.A. www.belvedere.peccioli.net

Un poco di storia
Nel 1997 a partire dalla necessità di mettere in sicurezza una discarica non gestita, il Comune decise di industrializzare la gestione dei rifiuti trasformando un problema in una opportunità e diventando di fatto con la società Belvedere S.p.A. un punto di riferimento per la progettualità, l’innovazione e lo sviluppo del territorio.
Nel 2021, il Comune di Peccioli è stato invitato alla Biennale Architettura di Venezia come esempio di comunità resiliente per una scelta che ha segnato la sua storia.

4° tappa – Ghizzano

Distanza: 9Km
Coordinate GPS: 43.539074315839784, 10.791661552378665

Indicazioni stradali: Triangolo Verde >> Via di Monti >> Via Poggetta >> Via Mercantino >> Strada comunale di Ghizzano >> Ghizzano
Il borgo di Ghizzano, le cui origini sono antecedenti al X secolo d.C., è divenuto famoso negli ultimi anni per le installazioni degli artisti Patrick Tuttofuoco, David Tremlett, Alicja Kwade, Irene Fortuyn e Robert O’Brien che hanno caratterizzato e reso unico il paese con le loro opere.
Arrivando dalla Strada Comunale è possibile lasciare le moto al parcheggio situato all’ingresso del borgo e proseguire a piedi per visitare il paese e le opere.

5° tappa – Cedri

Distanza: 10Km
Coordinate GPS: 43.509885159209986, 10.818125372681429

Indicazioni stradali: Ghizzano >> Via Santa Maria >> Via della Bonifica >> Via di Cedri >> Cedri
Il piccolo borgo di Cedri si erge su un poggio delimitato dai torrenti Isola e Roglio che si uniscono poco più a valle tra le frazioni di Montelopio e Ghizzano.
Le origini risalgono al periodo alto-medievale esisteva a Cedri una rocca con castellare, oggi non più esistente.
Si possono ammirare a Cedri, oltre al borgo, la Chiesa di San Giorgio al cui interno si trova l’installazione Sincronico di Vittorio Corsini

6° tappa – Montelopio

Distanza: 6Km
Coordinate GPS: 43.51076312638464, 10.77186410396734

Indicazioni stradali: Cedri>> Via di Cedri >> Montelopio
Tappa di passaggio tra Ghizzano e Fabbrica, Montelopio è conosciuto per la splendida Villa Mazzetti, oggi residenza turistica visitabile su appuntamento, per la Cappella di San Domenico e per essere immerso nel verde tra olivi, vigneti e boschi, caratteristica questa che nel passato lo fecero scegliere come possedimento di campagna delle più antiche e nobili famiglie toscane.
Nella parte finale del paese la strada si allarga ed è possibile parcheggiare e fermarsi ad ammirare il panorama sulla valle circostante.

7° tappa – Fabbrica

Distanza: 3Km
Coordinate GPS: 43.50702322956124, 10.757506488214615
Indicazioni stradali: Montelopio >> Via di Montelopio >> Fabbrica

Piccolo borgo castellare, meritano senza dubbio una visita a Fabbrica, oltre alla parte alta del paese, la Chiesa di Santa Maria Assunta e la Cappella dei Santi Rocco e Sebastiano all’interno della quale si trova una stazione del progetto “Voci”, il percorso artistico-letterario che si sviluppa all’interno del comune di Peccioli.
Arrivando da Ghizzano vi consigliamo di visitare prima La Cappella dei Santi Rocco e Sebastiano e poi, in moto, dirigervi in direzione Montecchio incontrando alla fine del paese la Chiesa di Santa Maria Assunta.

8° tappa – Montecchio

Distanza: 3Km
Coordinate GPS: 43.526406682404065, 10.738970369983425

Indicazioni stradali: Fabbrica >> Via di Fabbrica >> Montecchio
Ultima tappa del tour prima di rientrare a Peccioli, la frazione di Montecchio, piccolo borgo medievale abitato fin dai tempi degli etruschi, come testimoniano i reperti oggi visibili al Museo Archeologico di Peccioli.
Oltre alla caratteristica struttura medievale sono sicuramente da visitare la Chiesa dei Santi Lucia e Pancrazio e “Rilievi”, l’installazione permanente di Umberto Cavenago nella via principale del paese.

9° tappa – rientro a Peccioli

Distanza: 5Km
Coordinate GPS: 43.54764118024735, 10.720366286391279
Indicazioni stradali: Montecchio >> Via del Molino >> Peccioli

Termina così il nostro tour, nuovamente a Peccioli dove potrete soggiornare in uno dei tanti agriturismi presenti nel comune.

The Ghizzano Libbiano Legoli loop


A trail of 21 km

The itinerary of this loop starts from the characteristic village of Ghizzano, known for its colors and its contemporary art.

Along a road uphill shaded by rows of cypress trees, we reach Libbiano: here we find an Astronomical Observatory. The asteroid Peccioli was discovered thanks to this facility.

Continuing towards Legoli, we run along a futuristic waste disposal and treatment plant dominated by spectacular giants. A short detour towards the village of Legoli allows us to admire the tabernacle by Benozzo Gozzoli (dating back to 1479).

Heading back to Ghizzano on a dirt road, we bike cross a typical Tuscan landscape and on the final stretch uphill we can enjoy an evocative panorama.

By clicking on the link below, you can download the gpx file of this itinerary on your device:

The Ghizzano Libbiano Legoli loop