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Museum of the Beata Vergine della Salute


Fig.1:

Address: Via Madonna della Salute, 69

Contacts:
Telephone: 0546/52008

Tourist offices:

Description: The collection of votive offerings is housed inside the sanctuary of the Madonna della Salute, built between 1731 and 1735 near the town of Solarolo in the open countryside. The architecture is designed by Faenza architect Carlo Cesare Scaletta who at the time was known all over the Faentine district. His project is a sanctuary on a central base in octagonal shape with four chapels, of which the largest houses an image worshipped by the inhabitants of the place, the Madonna della Salute, a terracotta plate depicting the Madonna with child.

The sanctuary is presented with shapes that are far removed from the baroque that was diffused in Romagna at the time, as it had practically no decorations both inside and outside. From December 1944 to April 1945 the war front was on the river Senio and the town of Solarolo was almost totally destroyed. During this lapse of time the sanctuary was also seriously damaged, losing its bell tower and part of the roof.

Restoration works were completed in 1987, conducted and financed by the Superintendence for Archaeological and Environmental Heritage. In 1990, the idea was found to place a museum inside the sanctuary in order to house the votive tablets dedicated to the Madonna della Salute which, after damages and works that interested the sanctuary, were contained in large boxes and partly lost or stolen.

The exhibition itinerary has its first part in a visit of the sanctuary, where inside it is possible to enter the room dedicated to the exhibition of votive offerings. All the tablets are hanging in columns of five elements along the side walls of the room adjacent to the high altar. Access to this room is gained via a gate directly from the central octagonal area of the sanctuary. 

In the centre of the room there is a glass showcase with no independent lighting system, containing jewels and objects donated by followers to the sanctuary. The entire space is illuminated by a system of neon lights placed in a central position in the ceiling. The tablets are exhibited following a time principle, whilst the visitors’ itinerary is concluded with the four tablets with “depictive " votes.

In the room dedicated to the collection of votive offerings of the sanctuary of La Salute, there are today 187 offerings and 255 metallic depictive votes contained in six tablets. All these pieces were recorded in the registers and there are still stolen or lost pieces with precise descriptions made during the registration carried out by Antonio Corsara in 1932.

The majority of images present today in the sanctuary date back to the 18th and 19th centuries, even though there are 1900’s tablets and works up until today included in the collection. Both the author and the voter have been identified for all the tablets. 

 
Timetable:

Weekdays: Bookings only.


Rate:

Entrance fee: Free.


Directions: The Museum is inside the Sanctuary of the Beata Vergine della Salute. From the centre of the town travel along G. Pascoli. Turn left into via Madonna della Salute (Sp 61). The Sanctuary can be seen after around 200 metres.



Last updated: 14/11/2013