Jean-Baptiste Cerlogne was born in Cerlogne, a village of Saint-Nicolas in 1826. After working in Marseille as a chimney sweep, he was employed as cook at the Seminario Maggiore in Aosta, where his intelligence and creativity were noted and he was invited to study to take holy orders. Thus he became “Abbé Cerlogne”, author of numerous mostly poetic publications written in Provençal dialect (patois), and works defending and spreading this dialect, including the “Dictionnaire du patois valdôtain”. He died in 1910 in Saint-Nicolas, where his remains lie in a tomb behind the church façade.
The museum located in La Cure, near the parish church, presents works and several personal objects of this Aosta Valley poet, as well as works of vernacular poets and writers from the past. The devisor and curator of “Musée Cerlogne” was Renato Willien, writer, theater man and photographer, who on 16 October 1967 set up in the same museum the Centre for Provençal Studies, later moved to the village of Fossaz-Dessus, where it has its present seat.
A gallery for temporary exhibitions has been created in the ancient vaulted stable beneath the museum, which opened with an exhibition of the works of sculptor Carlo Gadin, preserver of the local tradition.