Sansepolcro nestles in the southeastern corner of Tuscany, just a few kilometers from Umbria and Marche. Although Sansepolcro is today an industrial town, the town centre is a great place to visit and is abundant in medieval history.
Sansepolcro is famous mostly due to the fact that it is the birthplace of one of the greatest painters of the Renaissance period - Piero della Francesca (1420). Piero spent all of his long life here, leaving his beloved birthplace only when the maecenas (wealthy patrons of art and literature) demanded his presence in Florence, Urbino, Rome or Ferrara. When afflicted by blindness in his later years, Piero devoted himself to writing theoretical works on the art of painting until his death in 1492.
Sansepolcro attracts art-lovers from all over the world, who come to see some of Piero’s masterpieces at the Museo Civico. Here, you can feast your eyes on such works as the San Giuliano, the breathtaking Madonna della Misericordia and The Resurrection, which Aldous Huxley, author of Brave New World, called the “the greatest masterpiece in the world.” The Museo Civico also houses numerous other works by great artists such as Pontormo and Luca Signorelli.
Once you’ve seen the museum, we recommend that you take a stroll to the Roman-Gothic cathedral to see its impressive Volto Santo, a statue of Christ from the 10th century, which is similar to the better-known version in the San Martino Cathedral in Lucca. The statue is dressed and crowned every year in November for the celebration of Christ the Redeemer.
While we’re on the topic of celebrations, we should also mention the Palio della Balestra. This is the very colourful and festive crossbow competition between Sansepolcro and Gubbio, which takes place every second Sunday in September