GIANLORENZO BERNINI (Self Portrait, age 25) Born December 7, 1598 Naples, Italy
BERNINI 1609: Gianlorezno carves a portrait bust that is so impressive that the Pope asks that the boy be brought to him. He asks the boy to sketch a head of St. Paul, and is so awed by the boy’s talent that he decides the child’s education and training are matters of utmost importance. He entrusts the child to a noted patron, Cardinal Maffeo Barberini, with the hope that the boy will become “ the Michelangelo of our century.” Pope Paul V by Guido Reni
BERNINI 1623: Maffeo Barberini assumes the papacy as Pope Urban VIII Pope Urban VIII by Bernini (for the Pope’s tomb in St. Peter’s)
BERNINI: ST. PETER’S Baldacchino Baldacchino: begun in 1624 (when Bernini was 25). Ninety-five foot bronze canopy directly under the dome over the crossing and directly over supposed burial site of St. Peter at the crossing of the basilica
BERNINI: ST. PETER’S—Crossing (Saints and relics)
BERNINI: ST. PETER’S—Cathedra Petri Cathedra Petri (“Peter’s Chair”): visible upon entering the church and framed by the columns of the Baldacchino.
Cathedra Petri: a hollow reliquary— encased by Bernini within is an old wooden chair believed to have been used by St. Peter, making it the first papal throne (in fact, tests of the wood it dates only from the 8 th or 9 th century). BERNINI: ST. PETER’S—Cathedra Petri (1657-66)
BERNINI: ST. PETER’S—Interior (tombs) Tomb of Pope Urban VIII
BERNINI: ST. PETER’S—Interior (tombs) Tomb of Pope Alexander VII (1678-79)
BERNINI: ST. PETER’S—Piazza St. Peter’s (1656-67) Piazza St. Peter’s: creates a large, open space where 250,000 people can gather to receive the pope’s blessing from either the basilica or the Vatican Palace directly to the north.
BERNINI: ST. PETER’S—Constantine in Scala Regia Scala Regia (Royal Staircase) Scala Regia: private entrance used by the pope to go between St. Peter’s and the Vatican. Bernini redesigned the steps so they would be less steep and more regular, and sculpted a statue of Constantine placed in the passage way leading directly into the church.
BERNINI: ST. PETER’S—Constantine in Scala Regia
BERNINI: ARCHITECTURE—Projects in Rome Ponte Sant’Angelo (1668-70s) Ponte Sant’Angelo: bridge leading to Castel Sant’Angelo; connects secular Rome to the Vatican. Commissioned by Pope Clement IX to sculpt a series of large, inspiring angels, each carrying an instrument of the Passion.
BERNINI: ARCHITECTURE—Projects in Rome (Fountains) Fountain of the Four Rivers (Piazza Navona; 1651): allegories of the four continents/ corners of the earth.
BERNINI: PORTRAIT SCULPTURE, SCULPTED BUSTS Francesco d’Este, Duke of Modena 1650s: flowing hair, billowing robe or cloak
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