Adrian Michael, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

San Pellegrino

Altirolo, Giornico

Today, the Church of San Pellegrino is tucked in the woods. Long ago, it used to be a bustling pilgrimage site. Originally, the road to Chironico (the ancient Via Francisca, leading wayfarers from Lombardy to Central Switzerland) ran under its portico. The church houses the most impressive fresco cycle of the late 16th century in Ticino.

The church was consecrated in the early 1400s and is divided into three parts: a front nave, a slightly elevated back nave and an apse which is also raised. Other features are the lateral chapel dedicated to the Madonna (added in 1591) and the belfry which dates back to 1701.

In an architectural frame of the facade, there are large-scale paintings of the coats of arms of the canton of Uri and the Leventina, and above, a representation of Our Lady. These frescos date back to 1589.

The church interior holds remarkable frescoes by Giovan Battista Tarilli and Domenico Caresana, both painters from Cureglia. In particular: The Last Judgment on the back wall; the apostles between the windows; the Vices, and the Virtues and the Fathers of the church in the lower part of the nave.

Altirolo, Giornico