The road is long and full of expectations: this is the title of the mural created by Eugenio Pacchioli for the municipality of Bollengo (TO) along the Via Francigena.
22 metres long and from 1.5 to 3 metres high, the wall is divided into 12 frames and aims to gift hikers travelling the Via Francigena with suggestions which fill them with a sense of hope and dreams linked to their own stories and thier existential story. The slowness, wonder, exertion, meetings, beauty, variety, silence, culture, faith, experience, stories…pilgrims experience all this and so much more along the Via Francigena.
A singular route, which from Canterbury arrives in Rome, Italy and can continue towards Jerusalem. In Bollengo, walkers are invited to take a break to imagine the hopes and dreams that the route offers and promotes; the struggle that walks alongside our ideas, hopes and existential reality.
Mayor, Luigi Sergio Ricca stated, “Bollengo decided to focus on art to enhance the Via Francigena, a route put forward to be considered UNESCO World Heritage. We don’t want to focus on tourism to achieve this, but on an empathetic participation in the philosophy of pilgrimage which animates this experience of hardship and culture, of faith and development. The mural aims to contribute to the route’s identity and addresses intelligence, sensibility and self-esteem of travellers and citizens; it helps people recall the purpose of the Francigena route, a figurehead from which other ‘curiosities’ along the route stem from.“
The mural is in a very visible position and can’t be missed. The colours and storytelling arouse curiosity and wonder in the historical centre of the town. I’ts not graffiti, but street art and wall paintings, a real artisitc project with its own purpose, rationale and relationship with the environment that surrounds it.
“Bollengo – concludes Mayor, Ricca – wants to invest intelligently in European culture. We need this element of wonder that invites us to reflect and be creative. The Pacchioli mural aims to do this and to tell hikers that they are invited to stop here in Bollengo to reflect on what the route offers, to discover the deep meaning of walking, of its ideals and existential feeling. It also creates a new feature of the town, which not only intices those who travel the Via Francigena, but also its residents. Bollengo, in other words, aims to be established as a place with strong ideals, which can propose and manage ‘new views’ of the town on an international level.“
The author of the mural, Eugenio Pacchioli, began his artistic career in 1976, which in numbers is 15,000 paintings; over 20 great monotheistic compositions; over 50 lithographies on history and traditions of the eporediese territory or inventive environments; over 30 books and thousands of sketches drawn on numerous journeys and personal exhibitions in Italy and abroad.
Here are the titles of the 12 frames on the mural:
Attesa di un nuovo Eden
Speranza di incontri forti e decisivi
Meditazione sul mito di Sisifo…per una leggerezza possibile
Attesa del mare…di fantasie, sogni e miti
La fatica del cammino e la fatica del giorno
(quel cammino che è partito da terre del Nord Europa e va verso attese piene e forti)
Il cammino regala un tempo prezioso
il cammino si riempie di cultura…un vulcano che fa teatro!
Il cammino regala il bello del silenzio
Sorprese, stimoli e novità…per l’intelligenza
Nel cammino, magari…una folgorazione
l’Arcangelo Michele…forte e sapiente sicurezza
La calma attesa di segni forti