The village of Arcumeggia

Province of Varese
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How to get

A8 Milan - "Laghi" toll motorway, Varese exit, continue in the direction of Laveno M. - Cuveglio


Arcumeggia, a small village 570 metres above sea level in the municipality of Casalzuigno in Valcuvia, is known as “Paese Dipinto” (Painted Town) or “Galleria all’aperto dell’Affresco” (Open-Air Fresco Gallery) since, in 1956, the locality was chosen, by the then Varese Province Tourism Association, as the base for the “Pittori in vacanza” (Artists on Holiday) show for the creation of frescoes on the external walls of houses by the greatest contemporary Italian artists.

In 1957, the “Casa del Pittore” (Painter’s House) was created with the aim of providing shelter for artists who wanted to work in the village. Around forty works were created by the artists Salvini, Carpi, Usellini, Ferrazzi, Saetti, Treccani, Monachesi, Montanarini, De Amicis, Morelli, Menzio, Migneco, Montanari, Tomea, Brancaccio, Sassu, Tomiolo, Brindisi, Dova, Funi and Faini. Recently, other painters have continued the fresco works. Images of experiences common to everyone’s lives, of popular saints and of famous religious scenes appear on the walls of houses. Going deeper into the village, there is a rural environment which is almost totally intact, a small beacon of Italian art which is a synthesis of tradition (the technique of frescoing) and of modernity (the time of their creation). The courtyards are also interesting, and the “Via degli Allievi” (Apprentice Way), a collection of works by students of the Academy of Art who take part in the “International Summer Fresco Courses” organised in Arcumeggia by the Brera Academy in conjunction with the most prestigious European Art Academies. Arcumeggia supports the Associazione Italiana Paesi Dipinti (Italian Association of Painted Towns) to emphasize this legacy of art.

A visit to this village of art is extremely evocative, affording splendid panoramic views over Valcuvia and Lake Maggiore. Its proximity to Mount Nudo (1,235 m) and Mount Colonna (1,203 m) allows for various excursions both on foot and on mountain bikes. It is possible to hire the audioguide at the Tourist Office and the two restaurants in the village: Price 2.00 Euro.

More details

All the year
from May to October
from Thuesday to Thursday from 10.00  to 12.00 am / from 3.00 to 6.00 pm
from Friday to Saturday from 9.00  to 12.00 am / from 3.00 to 6.00 pm
Sunday from 9.00  to 13.00 am / from 2.30 to 6.30 pm
Monday: closed