Church of Our Lady of Loreto or “Church of the five bell towers” in Perti
A sophisticated renaissance architecture placed in a rural landscape
The church of Nostra Signora di Loreto (Our Lady of Loreto) also called “of the five bell towers” for its slender steeples, can be attributable to the Del Carretto family and consists in one of the most prestigious examples of renaissance architecture in Liguria.
Inspired from Brunelleschi’s Florentine architectural models this church with a central plan was built in a rural context on the slope of a hill in the inland of Finale.
It’s steeples with pillars and columns made with Finale Stone tower in an uncontaminated natural scenery projecting over the rocky walls of the Aquila valley.
MORE INFORMATION – Church of Our Lady of Loreto
The church of Our Lady of Loreto of Perti, currently immersed in an olive tree grove, is linked to the commission of the Del Carretto marquises and visually dialogs with the close Gavone castle along with the 15th century bell tower of the Church of Saint Eusebius.
This building is one of the most exquisite examples of 15th century renaissance architecture in western Liguria.
It was built in a period in which the surrounding area was dominated by late gothic standards of Lombard derivation. This building was inspired by innovative architectural models of the second half of the 1400s that imitated the Sacrestia Vecchia in the Church of Saint Lawrence in Florence, built by Filippo Brunelleschi in 1419.
The reference model for the finalese church could also be identified in the prestigious urban chapel commissioned between 1462 and 1468 by the Florentine banker Pigiello Portinari in Sant’Eustorgio in Milan.
Having considered the proportions, these buildings share the essential nature of volume and space that is underlined by the tall pilasters with classical capitals that define the apsidal arch and the large oculi, circular windows opened on the bezels of the vaults that give light to the inside.
The church of Our Lady of Loreto of Perti was built around 1470 and has a central plan. The main body has Finale stone angular pillars and exposed brickwork that end with slender angular steeples. The octagonal tambour roof encloses an inner hemispheric cupola and culminates in a central skylight on slender columns. An apse (or smaller apsal structure) leans against the main body and is also covered by a semi-polygonal tambour.
On the angular pillars there are plaques in Finale stone with the “horse head” coat of arms of the Del Carretto family and in one case the coat of arms attributable to the marriage between Giovanni I Del Carretto and Viscontina Adorno that took place in 1452. Still Finale stone was used for the main classical style door with a tympanum, the external architectural decorations and for the two niches placed at the sides of the apsal space inside.
Independently from the unknown architect that made the project, this small church reveals the great capacities that the local workers that built and decorated it reached translating the “design” in an original architectural language in which the Finale stone is protagonist by combining it’s warm and light shades with the red of the brick and ornamental clay. This association of materials and colours can also be found in other monuments of the time as the Church of Saint Sebastian in Perti and the “diamond tower” in Gavone castle.
HOW TO REACH
CHURCH OF OUR LADY OF LORETO
How to reach the site
The church can be reached by car following the road for Perti Alta that starts from San Sebastiano on the road for Calice Ligure or on foot or bike leaving from Finalborgo and following the Berretta road.
Bookings for tours are available as part of the “Open door Open art” Project endorsed by MUDIF.
Archeotrekking “I Del Carretto e il Rinascimento Finalese”
The visit is part of the project “Archeotrekking finale” promoted by Museo Archeologico del Finale and by Guide association “Finale Natura”.
Calendar of visits