by Maddalena Grossi
The church of San Martino ai Cipressi is a pretty 14th-century construction with refurbishments and restoration works following a strong earthquake which hit Grassina (Bagno a Ripoli, Florence) in 1895. The neo-Gothic restoration works were carried out around 1920 by one of the main experts of this style, that is, the Florentine architect Giuseppe Castellucci (1863-1939) as revealed in the portico with columns, which leads to the church. Inside there is a conspicuous artistic wealth including an Our Lady of the Rosary by Lorenzo Lippi and a painting of The Virgin and Saints held to be the work of Andrea del Verrocchio’s school.
Along the via Chiantigiana, at the corner of the road which leads to the church, there is a quaint tabernacle showing a fresco of a Madonna and Child. This work is by the painter Pietro Annigoni (1910-1988), made in 1954 and shows Our Lady resting with a water flask at her side, a walking stick and some worn out clothes while Baby Jesus sleeps in the hood of her cloak. It is called Our Lady of Bon Voyage or the Traveller due to its particular iconography and also for its location situated right on one of the most important pilgrimage roads.