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Past exhibitions


The Lepontines and the Way of Hercules

Celts and Romans in Cisalpine Gaul

18 April - 9 June

"The fourth exhibition organized by the Museo del Paesaggio in association with the Model Club of Verbano Cusio Ossola focuses on the Lepontines, an ancient people of Celtic origin who lived in the upper Lake Maggiore area, the Ossola and the Canton Ticino, and who were subjugated by the Romans at the end of the 1st century B.C.  On display are original archaeological finds and historical figurines."


Out of the Sanctuary into the surrounding territory

How the Blessed Virgin of Re is venerated

22 November 2008 - 11 January 2009

Ten years ago the Val Grande National Park was dedicated to the Blessed Virgin of the Blood, the image venerated in the Sanctuary of Re in the Vigezzo Valley. This anniversary, which is also the anniversary of the formation of the cultural association “The Women of the Park”, is being marked at the Museo del Paesaggio by an exhibition on the cult of the “Madonna di Re” in the Lake Maggiore area and the Ossola valleys.  The exhibition includes painted votive offerings, images and holy pictures.

A dialogue with music. Screen prints by Antonio Calderara.

5 October - 2 November

A profound relationship exists between visual art and music, and throughout the 20th century various artists from Kandinsky on have explored this relationship. One of these artists was Antonio Calderara, who produced a number of “editions” in collaboration with musicians and poets to achieve a synthesis in book form of images, text and music. The exhibition displays 5 of these editions, produced between 1963 and 1974.

Defending the Alps

Alpine troops and the fortifications of the Cadorna Line

5 April - 31 May

For the third consecutive year, the Model Club of Verbano Cusio Ossola and the Museo del Paesaggio have cooperated in organising a historical exhibition on the First World War, the “Cadorna Line” and Intra’s Alpine Battalion, using a successful blend of relics and toy soldiers, documents and relief models, uniforms, historical models and pictures.


Antonio Calderara. Abstract works

10 November 2007 - 10 February 2008

“This is the first ever exhibition devoted entirely to the abstract period of Antonio Calderara (1903-1978), an artist who lived on Lake Orta and who was notable for his research into colour-light.  The exhibition presented by the Museo del Paesaggio contains 97 works, including oils on board and water colours as well as a substantial set of graphic publications resulting from his collaboration with poets, musicians and writers.”

Andrea Ruffoni. The Works

15 September - 28 October

“This is the first public showing of the works that Andrea Ruffoni (1925–1990) completed on Isola Pescatori in Lake Maggiore during the last period of his artistic career. Ruffoni returned to his native island in 1976 after living and working for twenty years in Germany, France and Austria.
The exhibition comprises a total of 43 sculptures and paintings, and is the first to be held in Casa Ceretti, the third exhibition centre of the Museo del Paesaggio.”

Forgotten stones

27 June - 29 July

“The Verbania photographer Roberto Toja records, in evocative black and white pictures, the architectural and anthropological heritage represented by the traditional stone buildings of the mid-Ossola Valley. This style of architecture is very old, dating from as early as the 14th-15th centuries, and is rooted in a predominantly rural life and economy.
The exhibition was held on the occasion of the LetterAltura festival.”

Garibaldi on Lake Maggiore

Personalities and feats of arms between the two Wars of Independence, 1848-1859

15 April - 31 May

“After the successful collaboration with the modelling enthusiasts’ association Model Club VCO in 2006, the format was repeated with this exhibition-competition of model soldiers together with a display of historical items such as weapons, uniforms, prints and paintings.  This year’s theme: Garibaldi, the bicentenary of whose birth is being celebrated in the whole of Italy, and the Risorgimento.”



Lake gardens in Europe

Cultural landscapes drawn from the water

30 September - 31 October

“This photographic exhibition, displayed on panels, presented by the Villa and Garden Archive of the Museo del Paesaggio on the occasion of the International Conference organised in Verbania in 2006, comprises wonderful pictures of around 160 gardens laid out on the shores of European lakes. Some common points are highlighted which may form a basis for an appreciation of the value of this European landscape heritage. The exhibition was also shown in Rome at the Piedmont Regional headquarters from 19 to 21 May 2007.”

Arnaldo Ferraguti 1862-1925

Painting and literature at the end of a century

30 September - 30 November

“The Museo del Paesaggio has organised the first monographic retrospective devoted to Arnaldo Ferraguti, a painter who, following in the footsteps of Francesco Paolo Michetti, used a verista style without social criticism. The husband of a niece of the publisher Emilio Treves (with whom at one time he lived in Pallanza), he also became one of the best-known Italian book illustrators of the late 19th century, illustrating books by Edmondo De Amicis, Giovanni Verga, and Gabriele D’Annunzio.”

Napoleon’s road

1 April - 30 April

“On the occasion of the bicentenary of the Simplon road ordered by Napoleon Bonaparte and the centenary of the Simplon railway tunnel, the Museo del Paesaggio, with the association of modelling enthusiasts Model Club VCO, has organised an exhibition of models, toy soldiers, historical picture cards and Napoleonic curios. A fresh way of narrating history.”



Echoes and mirrors

Works by Fausto Pagliano 1985 to 2005

29 October 2005 - 1 January 2006

“The exhibition illustrates twenty years of works by Fausto Pagliano.  Born in Genoa in 1942 and trained as an artist largely in Milan, he has since 1990 lived and worked in Montecrestese.  He uses different techniques (painting, photography, computer graphics etc), also in the same work, with the aim of capturing the idea of complexity.”

The countryside embellished

Historic gardens in the Province of Cuneo

16 October - 4 December

Costigliole Saluzzo (Cn), Palazzo Sarriod de La Tour
“An exhibition  for the general public of panels with new and old photographs and archive documents illustrating the historic gardens of the Province of Cuneo. The exhibition, by the Villa and Garden Archive of the Museo del Paesaggio in collaboration with the Marcovaldo Cultural Association of Caraglio, makes public the results of the census of 139 gardens compiled by the two organisers in 2003.”


Votive paintings from the sanctuary of the Madonna del Boden in private collections and the Museo del Paesaggio

3 July - 25 August

“The sanctuary of the Boden at Ornavasso, a Walser village in the Ossola Valley, is one of the most famous in the Verbano Cusio Ossola Province. For centuries the image of the Madonna del Boden has been widely believed to have miraculous powers, and the people have testified to this belief by producing a large number of painted ex-votos. The exhibition shows a significant selection."

Vittore Grubicy De Dragon

The poet of Divisionism, 1851-1920

16 April - 25 June

“Art dealer, critic, free-lance journalist and painter, Vittore Grubicy De Dragon is in many ways a pivotal figure in the story of Divisionism, and more generally of Italian painting in the last years of the 19th and early 20th centuries. Working in Miazzina high above Lake Maggiore, isolated from the world of sound by his deafness, he achieved some genuine masterpieces, interpreting the spirit of the landscape through subdued and “musical” evocations. ”



Towards an Atlas of the gardens of Piedmont

Working criteria for a knowledge and appreciation of the value of the gardens of Piedmont

27 August - 24 September

“This exhibition on panels was shown first at the Museo del Paesaggio in 2004 and subsequently at various locations in Piedmont. It was organised by the Villa and Garden Archive of the Museum to publicise the modus operandi of the Archive in cataloguing the historic gardens of Piedmont.”



The setting of Lake Maggiore

29 August - 7 September

Verbania State Archive
“The exhibition is held in the building housing the Verbania State Archive, and is organised by the Archive along with the Museo del Paesaggio. It displays a selection of documents from the Archive showing some of the plans for villas and gardens which in the nineteenth century changed the landscape on the Piedmont shore of Lake Maggiore.”

Federico Ashton painter of the mountain

2 August - 19 October

“Nineteenth century Romantic painter, who continued in the Romantic style when its heyday was past, the retiring, solitary Federico Ashton roamed valleys and climbed mountains in search of the picturesque, and sometimes the sublime. Domodossola became his adopted town, his base for discovering and painting the marvellous landscapes of the Ossola and the Valais Canton, just beginning to be affected by Alpine tourism.”

Re: the ex-votos from the sanctuary

Votive paintings from the 17th to the 20th centuries

1 April - 28 May

“The exhibition is held in collaboration with the Sanctuary of the Virgin of the Blood, of Re; it shows a selection of ex-voto paintings from this famous shrine in the Vigezzo Valley.  The ex-votos on display cover a period of four centuries, from the 17th to the 20th, and highlight the profundity of the popular veneration for this miraculous image of the Virgin.”


Homage to Elide Ceretti

16 December 2001 - 17 February 2002

“This exhibition at the Museo del Paesaggio honours Elide Ceretti, a painter whose artistic career was devoted to the study of light. She died in 1996 and left her works and possessions to the Museo del Paesaggio. The paintings on display are for sale, and the profits will be used to finance the refurbishment of the artist’s house in Intra, with the aim of turning it into an art centre,  the wish expressed by the artist in her will.”

Alberto Longoni in the country of No Reason

30 July - 14 October

“Alberto Longoni (1921-1991) was a Milanese artist who settled in Emo of Crodo in the Ossola Valley in 1986. He was a highly versatile and original painter, drawer, author and illustrator. He experimented with a  number of techniques – pastel, water-colour, engraving, pen and ink drawing – using a variety of materials, such as sand, paper, textiles, packing cardboard.”



Antonio Gennari

Stories of square and church, dead men and witches

1 July - 24 September

“The paintings of Antonio Gennari appear as short, popular stories which might have been told at the local tavern, or perhaps rather as tragic-comic plays. Always set in his native Vigezzo Valley, even when they have a religious theme, they differ from the artistic tradition of the valley in their provocative, irreverent content, and their lively figurative language which might be defined as dialectal.”

Infinite lives, infinite deaths

1 May - 11 June

“This exhibition, organised by the Museo del Paesaggio in the Church of San Fermo in Pallanza, has as its subject the designers Alessandro Guerriero, the founder in 1976 of Alchimia, one of the liveliest groups in the development of post-avant-garde Italian design, and Alberto Biagetti, who in 1996 opened the “Radiosità” studio with Guerriero.”


Arturo Martini, sculpture interrogated

Works from 1934 to 1947

5 September - 31 October

“This is an exhibition of over 50 works – sculptures, medals, engravings, drawings and paintings – which Arturo Martini made between 1934 and 1947. In particular, the 28 sculptures (bronzes, plasters, terracottas) on display illustrate the artist’s search for a new concept of space, and how he reached solutions which were the antithesis of those of his better known works.”

Gino Bionda (1919-1986) watercolours and gouaches

30 May - 11 June

“The exhibition includes only a small part of the thousands of watercolours, drawings and gouaches painted throughout his life by the Gravellona painter Gino Bionda. A veterinary surgeon, he left his profession to devote himself to his art, like Klee exploring the limitless world of shapes with an incredible sense of invention.”



Madonna della Colletta in Luzzogno

5 July - 13 August

“The exhibition includes 40 ex-voto paintings (18th-20 cent.) from the Sanctuary of the Madonna della Colletta at Luzzogno (Strona Valley), as well as other items relating to the village and the Sanctuary, among them old photographs, a model and plans of the village. Also on display is the hand-woven hempen cloth used to cover the “Galleria” in which the statue of the Virgin is carried every three years from the Sanctuary to the village.”

Drawings made in childhood by Andrea Vaccaro from 1946 to 1951

5 April - 17 May

“An exhibition of drawings by Andrea Vaccaro, who was born in Pallanza in 1939 and spent part of his childhood here. The drawings were made between 1946 and 1951, when the artist was between 7 and 12 years old. It is fascinating to observe the vision of a child who was able to capture in a few lines the details of the world around him, from adults to animals, from games to people working, from a wide variety of environments to the circus.”



Gian Maria Rastellini 1869-1927

28 September - 27 October

“The work of the Vigezzo painter Gian Maria Rastellini has been rediscovered through this exhibition. Rastellini was a pupil of Enrico Cavalli at the Rossetti Valentini School of Fine Art in Santa Maria Maggiore in the Vigezzo Valley. The works presented here – family and commissioned portraits, still lifes, Vigezzo landscapes, seascapes - reveal his naturalism, which sometimes hints at a degree of symbolism.”



Mario Tozzi 1895-1979

29 July - 15 October

“In the centenary of the birth of Mario Tozzi, the Museo del Paesaggio has organised an anthology exhibition of the artist’s work, an exhibition acclaimed by the public and critics alike. The 72 works on show illustrate the creative development of this artist, who often stayed in Suna (Verbania): a style originally close to Impressionism evolved in a more classical direction, defined as “natural metaphysics”, and eventually tended towards abstraction.”

Hors d’oeuvre: installations in the Museo del Paesaggio of Verbania

17 June - 16 July

“This “Hors d’oeuvre” of contemporary art brings together some artists of the latest generation; on show are their paintings (which may come under the title of “new symbolism”) and analytical-hardware installations.  The artists represented are Corrado Bonomi, Ferruccio d’Angelo, Alessandra Galbiati, Mario Marucci, Mercurio, Mirko Petrossi.”

P.G.R. Per Grazia Ricevuta (For favours received)

Exhibition of votive paintings from the 16th to the 19th centuries from the Eugenio Cefis collection

8 April - 21 May

“These painted ex-votos from the Eugenio Cefis collection,  amassed over fifty years, constituted the beginning of the donation to the Museum of the whole collection, which is now the heart of the Popular Devotion, Art and Culture Section of the Museum.”



Tricks of radiance

23 July - 21 August

“Daniela Tartaglia’s photographs originate in contemplation, triggered by observations of nature, wild or cultivated: branches, leaves, greenhouses, woods, evoking comparisons between real forms relating to everyday life, and abstract shapes arising from the interior world.”



Carlo Cressini 1864-1938, landscape artist of the high mountains

19 September - 1 November

“Originally a post-scapigliato painter, the Lombard Carlo Cressini soon turned towards a Naturalism of the school of Carcano, after which painted figurative works with a symbolist tone, finally adopting a Divisionist technique. A keen climber, he painted prevalently Alpine panoramas, especially favouring the upper Ossola (Monte Leone, Alpe Veglia, Sempione, Monte Rosa).”



Achille Tominetti 1848-1917

18 August - 6 October

“Achille Tominetti was a “peasant-painter” admired by Antonio Massara, the founder of the Museo del Paesaggio; Massara regarded Tominetti, with his genuineness and rustic simplicity, as having “sprung spontaneously” from the lake and mountains of the Maggiore area. The painter lived and worked largely in Miazzina, painting the surrounding landscapes and the work of the people of the village faithfully in a style between Lombard naturalism and traces of Divisionism.”



Paolo Troubetzkoy 1866-1938

29 April - 29 July

“This extensive retrospective exhibition devoted to Paolo Troubetzkoy (Intra1866 – Suna 1938), the Verbania sculptor of Russian origin, shows the public around two hundred works, in plaster, bronze and marble. It offers a full panorama of the whole artistic development of an artist whose main activity was to portray the cosmopolitan elite of the “belle époque” in a style of sculpture derived from Impressionism.”



Carlo Manini

14 October - 26 November

“On the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Municipality of Verbania, the Museo del Paesaggio has organised a personal exhibition of works by the Verbania sculptor Carlo Manini. On display are 60 works by the self-taught artist, in various materials (different metals, marble, granite, terracotta, etc), representing the production of 25 years.”

Enrico Conti

30 September - 31 October

“The paintings of Enrico Conti, who chose to live and work in Verbania, can be divided into two periods. The first, from 1956 to 1967, initially shows a tendency to the surreal influenced by Klee, and later an informal, abstract style characterised by an emphasis on gesture.  In the second, from 1968 to 1980, the painter’s representation of cosmic forces is executed with a more mature technique and changing colours.”



Leonardo Dudreville a Ghiffa

Paintings from 1942 to 1968

29 October - 27 November

“After moving to Ghiffa in 1942, Leonardo Dudreville formed a strong bond of affection with Lake Maggiore, which was reinforced by his enjoyment of fishing and shooting. This bond emerges in his painting in his rediscovery of and wholehearted adherence to realism, well illustrated in the 51 paintings of landscapes, still lifes and portraits in this exhibition.”

On the water

10 September - 9 October

“An exhibition of photographs on the theme of water, by 5 contemporary photographers: Vincenzo Castella, Vittore Fossati, Guido Guidi, Arno Hammacher and Fulvio Ventura, who have in common a capacity for reflection and silent observation – at times going so far as to be minimalist – of the landscape.”



Measures of the landscape

10 October - 8 November

“This exhibition by the Museo del Paesaggio shows the work of 8 young photographers – Giampietro Agostini, Marco Baldassari, Carlo Barbon, Moreno Gentili, Nicola Lorusso, Martino Marangoni, Massimo Trenti, Marco Zanta – who explore the landscape, nature and the territory from different viewpoints but with a common desire for research.” 

Sassu. Landscape

4 July - 16 August

“In these landscape paintings, almost all on view for the first time, the relationship of the great Italian artist Aligi Sassu with nature as something to be contemplated (myths originate in contemplation: the myths of the sea, the sun, the islands, the forests), or as a place where the spiritual activity of the individual is projected, is expressed in his use of colour.”



Giovanni Battista Ciolina

Humanity and landscapes of the Vigezzo Valley

14 September - 2 November

“This exhibition is devoted to the Vigezzo painter Giovanni Battista Ciolina (1870-1955), a pupil of Enrico Cavalli at the School of Fine Arts in Santa Maria Maggiore, subsequently an exponent of the Divisionist style. The 59 paintings on display here highlight the artist’s search for “reality”, which he pursued largely through the “reality of colour”.”

Obscura: nature reflected

2 August - 10 September

“The works on show here, on the theme of nature, were executed in Verbania by the photographer Paolo Gioli using antique pinhole cameras together with film produced using sophisticated technology, as part of his experimental research into techniques and materials. The results stimulate the viewer’s reflections on the nature of vision and representation.”

Colour in a built-up environment

24 May - 28 June

“It often happens that the restoration of historic town centres concentrates on saving buildings at the expense of the colours and chromatic harmony of the environment. This exhibition, aimed at the general public, describes the Plan for the colour coordination of the town of Omegna, drawn up by the author, and gives practical details on methods to apply in the conservation of this kind of environment.”

Romanesque architecture

Problems of conservation in the Novara area

19 April - 11 April

“This exhibition illustrates in 20 panels (comprising brief explanations, photographs and reliefs) how the restoration of Romanesque buildings has been pursued by the Monuments and Fine Arts Office of the Province of Novara (of which the present Province of Verbano Cusio Ossola used to be part). A further 22 panels show what remains of Romanesque architecture in the town of Verbania.”



Matteo Mantegazza: photography as painting

26 October - 29 October

“In 1984 the children of the photographer Matteo Mantegazza (1885-1971) donated a large number of significant photographs by their father to the Museo del Paesaggio. This exhibition displays a selection of these photographs, comprising “Autochrome” plates (the Lumière process), trichrome plates, stereoscopic plates, toned prints – all examples of research into the picturesque in photography.”

Paolo Monti

Ossola workshop

17 August - 22 September

“A selection of images by the great experimental photographer Paolo Monti (Novara 1908 – Milan 1982) of his beloved Ossola: stones, water, trees, details of plant life, mountains, skies, all executed in the awareness of the power of photography as a means of knowing nature.”

Siro Penagini

15 June - 31 July

“This anthological exhibition of the work of Siro Penagini (1885-1952), a painter who lived in Solcio di Lesa, comprises 53 paintings and 45 drawings. It offers the chance to reappraise an artist who has been misunderstood, partly on account of his solitary and retiring lifestyle,  whose painting uses a language containing elements of difference form the prevailing styles of Modernist art.”

Flowers and silk

12 May - 1 June

“This exhibition illustrates the project, devised by a group of architects, of establishing a “Flower exchange” in Meina in the disused buildings of the former Cascami Silk Factory. It comprises an introduction on industrial archaeology and flower-growing in this area, and historical documents and graphic and photographic material relating to the disused factory building.”



Looking at Verbania

11 August - 16 September

“These 60 photographs of Verbania by Giorgio De Sordi, Giuseppe Lisi, Giuliano Scavini and Tonino Zanfardino (members of the Fotocine Club Verbania) offer an interpretation of a provincial town environment seen through the camera lens.”

Gignese en plein air

5 May - 24 June

“This exhibition displays landscapes by a group of Lombard painters who worked in Gignese during the last decades of the nineteenth century. These painters – Filippo Carcano, Mosè Bianchi, Eugenio Gignous, Uberto Dell’Orto, Pompeo Mariani, Leonardo Bazzaro, Eleuterio Pagliano, Achille Formis, and Guido Boggiani – chose the village on the slopes of Mottarone above Stresa as a natural studio for their research on landscape.”



Four in Verbania (not forgetting the lake)

13 August - 11 September

“To celebrate the opening of a Photography Section intended to collect photographs, past and present, of Verbania, the Museo del Paesaggio has organised this exhibition of photographs of the town specially taken for the occasion by four great Italian photographers, Luigi Ghirri from Modena, Natale Zoppis from Verbania, Gabriele Basilico and Francesco Radino from Milan.”



Paintings by Luigi Bolongaro

8 May - 13 June

“The Museo del Paesaggio in partnership with the Tourist Office of Verbania presents the first anthological exhibition of works by Luigi Bolongaro (1874 - 1915), a painter who lived mostly in his native Stresa and in Varzo. The 76 paintings on show cover the artistic development of this neglected painter, whose themes are the fundamental ones of portraits and landscapes.”


Miazzina 1910 through the lens of Erminio Meschia

18 October - 1 November

“The Museo del Paesaggio exhibits original photographs and enlargements from 9x12 cm plates made by the photographer and painter Erminio Meschia (1868-1928) after 1910, when he left Milan to settle in the village of Miazzina, where his family came from. Here he began his artistic collaboration with Achille Tominetti.”



1909-1979. 70th anniversary of the foundation of the Museum

Exhibition in homage to the painter Achille Tominetti

27 October - 11 November

“On the occasion of the 70th anniversary of the founding of the Museo del Paesaggio, the Museum opens its doors to the public with a new lay-out and an exhibition in homage to Achille Tominetti, the Miazzina painter admired by the Museum’s founder Antonio Massara for his genuineness and rustic simplicity.”

The Alluvial Plain of Fondotoce: a Nature Park?

7 April - 25 April

“This exhibition of photographs, maps and documents aims to highlight the problem of conserving the Alluvial Plain of Fondotoce, the last strip of natural land remaining on the Piedmont shore of Lake Maggiore.” 



Aptico, the sense of sculpture

11 July - 15 September

“ ‘Aptico’ is the second Biennial Exhibition of contemporary sculpture organised by the Museo del Paesaggio. Taking part are artists of the calibre of Lucio Fontana, Fausto Melotti, Piero Manzoni, Luciano Fabro, Hidetoshi Nagasawa, Athos Ongaro, Giulio Paolini and Fernando Melani.”



Scultorincontro verbania 74

15 June - 15 September

“In 1974 the Museo del Paesaggio organised its first exhibition of open-air sculpture, which saw the participation of 40 sculptors from Italy and abroad, all artists of distinction and involved in a wide variety of research in the field of contemporary art. The largest works were installed on Pallanza lakefront, giving rise to new, fascinating interactions with the landscape.”



1800: Forgotten Verbano

27 May - 10 June

“This exhibition represents the first initiative of the new group appointed by the Town Council to run the Museo del Paesaggio.  A census made of the patrimony of the museum revealed the documents on display in the Casa della Cultura in Intra: nineteenth century prints, drawings, oil paintings and posters relating to Verbania and the lake area.”

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