Alfredo Graziano Vergani
Da Galliano alla Martesana. Aspetti costruttivi e decorativi della pieve di Santo Stefano a Vimercate nel medioevo digital
formato: Articolo | ARTE LOMBARDA - 2009 - 2
The work Ariberto di Intimiano promoted in Galliano can be considered in a more extensive plan for renovation of the parishes of the comitatus Martexane, for which various testimonials survive, including the little known case of the church of Santo Stefano in Vimercate: a building that has come down to us in the form of an architectural palimpsest, the result of the modifications carried out between the fifteenth and nineteenth centuries on a structure raised between the tenth and twelfth centuries through six separate building campaigns, as is revealed in the stratigraphic analyses of the elevations. As in Galliano, here, too, there must have been a rich body of medieval wall paintings, of which only a few fragments that can be dated between the eleventh and fourteenth century remain, including the Doctors of the Church frescoed on the vault of the chapel dedicated to St. Ambrose around 1340-50 by a painter from the Milanese milieu. The medieval sculpture is also of great interest, starting with the fragment of an interlace cornice from the Carolingian period walled into the north apsidiole which could be a surviving remnant of the primitive church of Santo Stefano, documented from 745 onwards. A capital in the crypt and a human head with an apotropaic function on the bell tower are contemporary with Romanesque reconstruction, while the Boninian sculptural group of the Madonna and Child between St. Stephen and a Knight Saint, placed on the façade in 1608, dates to 1350-60. A Boninian matrix emerges in even closer terms in the unpublished marble figure of St. John the Baptist, once on the baptismal font. A date of ca. 1375-85 is put forward for this work.