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By 1540 the restraint of the best High Renaissance work had come to seem dull, leading to a search for novelty which lead to Mannerism. Michelangelo was one of the first to explore the plastic nature of building forms. The two founding fathers of the Baroque are Bernini and Borromini, both originally sculptors.Much of the design in Rome was centered around the church during the Baroque period. Bernini and Borromini exploded the Renaissance ideas of form.

Baroque is a mixture of architecture, sculpture, painting and trickery.

Vignola and Palladio in the second half of the 16th century sought to change the course of the movement towards Mannerist and Baroque art. Palladio wrote treatises and did very simple, lovely designs. Palladio and Vignola both died in 1580. The Baroque era was in.

I Beams

The Catholic church had lost a significant section of its holdings during the Reformation, but was expanding in many parts of the western world.

Tricks of light and shade, plastic variation, forced drama, disregard for structure and material, which has almost become an insult to structure and material. Baroque artists deserted symmetry and equilibrium to experiment with new and vigorous massing.

Most educated people were well aware of architectural detailing and Renaissance proportions. When Baroque architects manipulated the well known forms, it was often seen as a visual joke, similar to some of the Post Modern work such as the BBC building in London.

Giacomo Barozzi da Vignola 1507 - 73

Carlo Maderna (1556 - 1629)

Francesco Borromini (1599 - 1667)

Giovanni Lorenzo Bernini (1598 - 1680)

Carlo Fontana was responsible for taking a somewhat milder form of the Baroque to the rest of Europe.

 

W610X195

 

W610 refers to the general height of the beam.

195 refers to the mass per linear meter.

Bernini's Piazza

Beef Island Airport

I Beam

 

Bernini's Baldacchino

I Beam from the side

 

 

 

San Andrea al Quirinale

Support Post using I Beams

 

Above each clerestory window is a set of sculpted figures, some adult, some children. The ribbed dome is inset by sextagonal coffers. Unlike the Pantheon whose occulus is open, this one is capped but with enough light to make it appear a floating disk of gold.

 

elliptical dome

S. Carlo alle Quattro Fontane 1665 - 67

Borromini

The façade of this church shows the undulating curves that are typical of the Baroque era. An exaggerated cornice above an inscripted architrave is supported on four composite giant order columns. The second level within the columned area contains large exuberant figures. The first level niches contain crowned, elliptical openings within a secondary set of columns.

The play of curves and counter-curves is a well known motif of Baroque architecture. This was the first building to employ them.

Quattro Fontane

S. Carlo alle Quattro Fontane 1665 - 67

The upper section of the façade shows the same dynamic curves. The central bay curves forward while the lateral bays curve back. It is a pliant spatial form. The two angels seem to be flying in front of the church to hold up the large oval medallion.

Borromini worked in the studio of Bernini, on the Baldachino and on the Palazzo Barberini. This church, affectionately known as San Carlino, is the first work that is truly his own.

Quattro Fontane

S. Carlo alle Quattro Fontane 1665 - 67

This detail of the corner fountain shows the playfulness of the overall design.

Fountain detail

Doorway

Across the street is this fabulous door surround obviously from the same period.

door

St. Agnese - Borromini

1652 - 1666

Along with Bernini, Borromini set the tone for the Baroque age. The façade fronts onto the Piazza Navona in Rome. Borromini was the most eccentrically imaginative of all the Roman designers. He was accused of violating good taste in his pursuit of the new. His anguished, tense, emotional sculpture is dynamic.

The plan is comparatively restrained, but the splendid composition with recessed front, twin campanili, and commanding dome is largely due to Boromini. The interior is by Rainaldi. (Fletcher)

St. Agnese

S. Maria della Pace- Rome - 1656

Originally built by Bramante, the façade with semi-circular portico was redone by Cortona. Like the Quattro Fontane, this is a study in convex and concave forms. The heavy pillars and columns provide the solid structure and the building is woven through them.

St. Agostino

S. Maria della Pace - detail

 

St. Agostino

Victor Emmanuel

Sacconi 1885

The monument to Victor Emmanuel II started many years later illustrates the academic application of Baroque forms.

Great bronze sculptural groups adorn the paired end pavillions of the colonnaded terrace. In the center is an equestrian statue of the King. This harkens back more to the Baroque than to the Renaissance.

Victor Emmanuel

Victor Emmanuel

Sacconi 1885

An interesting Post Modern film encompassing many concepts of Roman architecture is peter Greenaways The Belly of An Architect. Like most Greenaway films it is severely twisted, but an excellent allegory of Roman building and subsequent intellectual thought.

Victor Emmanuel

Palazzo Barberini _1628 - 38_

This Palazzo was designed by Maderna but was finished by Bernini and Borromini. The palazzo has no courtyard, but insteada is an H shape. The façade is rythmic, composed of Roman Order pediments.

The windows on the inner area are more sculptural.

Palazzo Barberini

Palazzo

16??

 


 

Baroque Windows

Rococco Design

 

 

Rococco

Broken Pediment

 

Broken Pediment

Palazzo Barberini

1628-1638

This design was done by Maderna, but executed by Bernini and Borromini. The two lower floors are fairly standard, with a straightforward application of the "Roman Order" design; first floor with engaged Doric columns, and the second with engaged Ionic. The third floor, however, has the seven windows treated with perspective. There are overlaid pilasters leading to the entablature and cornice.Richer ornamentation and the trick of perspective are what gives this a Baroque air.

wells

 

Baroque

Santa Maria della Salute Venice 1676

Baldassare Longhena

Longhena was the most distinguished Venetian architect of the period. Santa Maria was designed and built in gratitude for the end of the plague. It is an octagonal church with temple fronts on each side capped with oversized scrolled buttresses supporting a massive circular dome. Atop the buttresses are acropodiums.

A secondary dome over the altar has the same general shape and lantern as the central dome.

The façade of the church fronts onto the This church exemplifies the Venetian Baroque period.

Longhena

Palazzo Pesaro

Longhena

This palazzo illustrates how the Roman palazzo style, with first floor rustication and subsequent tiers of orders, was translated into Venice. Arches between the columns show the ornament particular to the Venetian area. Garlands, swags and lions heads adorn the cornice and show the decorative style that was typical of the period.

 

 

 

 

 

Pesaro

Baroque Outside Italy

 

France

In Italy the Baroque architects were continuing the reinterpretation of the Classical ideals of the past mixed with the Humanist ideas of the Renaissance and tempered by a good sense of design.

In France the reinterpretation of the Classical ideals was along a much more philisophical level which incorporated ideas of purity, austeriyt and formal discipline which resulted in the French Golden Age of Classical architecture. The French embraced the Italian architectural treatises and used them to create their own rational system of harmonies and proportions.

England

Inigo Jones - was trained in the Palladian discipline and brought back drawings to England of the Greek and Roman ruins.

Christopher Wren was as close to Baroque as England ever became.

Restoration 1660
Great Fire of London 1666

 

Institute of France

1662 Louis le Vau

The Institute of France, also known as the "College of the Four Nations", was constructed for those students coming from territories which had recently come under French rule through the Peace of Westphalia (1648) and the Treaty of the Pyrenees (1659).

During the Italian Renaissance and the Baroque periods, France twice invaded Italy. Charles VIII 1494 , Francois 1515 were not impressed with the overall style, but found some of the detail impressive. The role of the decorative designers was predominant.


 

Chateau Chambord

Blois 1635

Francois Mansart

This is one of Mansart's finest works showing the grand simplicity of the French Classical style. The massing of the blocks is masterful. Like the Colosseum, the ground floor has the Doric order, the second level has the Ionic, and the third or attic story has a truncated version of the Corinthian order.

The crowning feature of this design is the high pitched roof with two angles broken by dormers that bears his name.

 

Chateau Chambord

Blois 1635

Francois Mansart

The main door of this wing of Blois was approached by colonnades with paired and clustered columns.


 

Chateau Chambord

Versaille 1675

Louis XIV

Baroque is the architecture of pageantry.

Versaille 1675
Jacques Lemercier 1585 - 1654
Francois Mansard 1598 - 1666
Louis Le Vau 1612 - 1670
Le Notre - great gardener
Le Brun - painter

 

Chateau Chambord

Versaille

Versaille was built in a period of eloquence and insatiable pageantry. There were no sanitary conveniences. It was made around Le Notres grand garden design. The trianon and the Petit Trianon were built within the palace walls so that the inhabitants could have a bit of privacy.

 

Chateau Chambord

Versaille

Jules Hardouin Mansart 1646 - 1708 is the interpreter of Louis Xiv architectural ambitions.


 

Chateau Chambord

Versaille

1662 Louis le Vau

Francois Mansard 1598 - 1666
Louis Le Vau 1612 - 1670
Le Notre - great gardener


 

Chateau Chambord

Versaille

1662 Louis le Vau

Development of the "French Order" started when Francis I set up his hunting lodge at Fontainbleau into a design center, thereby setting up the French center of the Rennaissance. Il Rosso and Primaticcio were the court painters brought in from Italy. They changed their proportions for the French style. The French had very large fireplaces, large windows and great chimneys.

Chateau Chambord

Versaille

1662 Louis le Vau

Francois Mansard 1598 - 1666
Louis Le Vau 1612 - 1670
Le Notre - great gardener


 

Chateau Chambord

Versaille

1662 Louis le Vau

Francois Mansard 1598 - 1666
Louis Le Vau 1612 - 1670
Le Notre - great gardener


 

Chateau Chambord

Versaille Garden

Le Notre

Parterre - various sized and shaped garden beds


 

Chateau Chambord

Paris

 


 

Chateau Chambord

Paris

Claridges

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chateau Chambord

ST. Paul's Cathedral

 

The first of many versions of the cathedral is believed to have been built by the Saxons in about 604 AD. This cathedral was built in wood and burned down about ten years after it was built. The Cathedral was rebuilt a number of times over the next hundred years, progressing in architecture and style every time it was rebuilt. The third St. Paul's, which was built by the Normans, took over two hundred years to build and was finally completed in the 14th century. By the 16th century, St. Paul's was severely decaying and over the next hundred years went through many renovations until it was destroyed the Great Fire of London in the 17th century. 1666 to be exact. Christopher Wren built a sanctuary exactly 6660 inches long.
The story of the new St. Paul's begins with the inscription RESVRGAM engraved on the first stone laid, meaning 'I resurrect'. There are many, many great stories attached to this building.

Wren's original design for the cathedral was rejected by the church as being too modern. The second design, submitted in 1675, was a domed church in the shape of a Greek Cross. This, too, was rejected. This time the reason given was that it was too modern and too Italian (read Catholic). The scale model of this design, called the Great Model, can be viewed in the crypt of the present St. Paul's.


Finally in 1675 Wren gave the clergy what they wanted; a traditional English church design with a long nave and spire. King Charles II granted Wren a royal warrant approving this design with the interesting proviso that the architect was free to make "variations, rather ornamental than essential". One can almost imagine Charles giving his favorite Wren a sly wink as this was penned.
On the strength of the Royal Warrant Wren proceeded to quietly change just about every essential element of the design the clergy thought they were getting. He got rid of three bays in the nave, did away with the spire, enlarged the dome, and raised the aisle walls.
Much of this work proceeded behind scaffolding and protected from prying eyes. By the time the furious clergy realized what Wren had done the church was too far gone to be altered.

They were not the only ones to be hoodwinked by Wren. The London Building department would not approve the design for the dome since a dome with that rotunda height topped by a dome had never been done. The triple-layered dome that crowns the cathedral is the second largest in the world. They insisted that Wren have a chain, similar to that put in Hagia Sophia when it started to crumble, around the bottom of the dome. Wren put in the chain but was not convinced that it was necessary. On December 29, 1940, the night of one of the most devastating German aerial attacks, the Cathedral's dome caught fire from one of the burning buildings surrounding it. Flames arose from the dome but did only superficial damage, it didn't collapse. During the restoration in 1947, structural engineers noted that the chain at the base of the dome was built missing one link.
When stone was laid for the centre of the new building, stones from the Old St. Paul's were used. Wren noticed that one of the stones was marked with the Latin inscription "resurgam", "I shall rise again". He had the word inscribed on the pediment of the south door, beneath a carved phoenix.

The Phoenix symbolizes rebirth, especially of the sun, and has variants in European, Central American, Egyptian and Asian cultures. At the end of its life-cycle the phoenix builds itself a nest of cinnamon twigs that it then ignites; both nest and bird burn fiercely and are reduced to ashes, from which a new, young phoenix arises. The new phoenix embalms the ashes of the old phoenix in an egg made of myrrh and deposits it in Heliopolis ("the city of the sun" in Greek), located in Egypt. The bird was also said to regenerate when hurt or wounded by a foe, thus being almost immortal and invincible A new phoenix always rises from the ashes. Ancient sources on the mythological bird include Clement, Ovid, Pliny, Tacitus and Herodotus. Although descriptions (and life-span) vary, the phoenix (Bennu bird) became popular in early Christian art, literature and Christian symbolism, as a symbol of Christ, and further, represented the resurrection, immortality, and the life-after-death of Jesus Christ.

The phoenix, not a Christian symbol, is widely used by Freemasons, as, indeed, is anything coming from Egypt. Wren was certainly a Freemason as were many of the architects of his time.

St. Paul's 1675 - 1715

Christopher Wren

West Façade

St. Paul's was built by Wren after the fire on the site of a medieval cathedral.

Wren's original plan was for a Greek Cross design.

This was given up for a traditional Gothic design church, with classical detailing throughout. The clergy ordered the change because of the services. Height is 366'. The lantern bell and top are over 850 tons.

St. Paul's

St. Paul's

South Portal

In the pediment of the south portal is an image of a phoenix . The semi-circular portico is almost certainly taken from Santa Maria della Pace in Rome.

Chateau Chambord

St. Paul's

Christopher Wren

"One Sunday night (we had been talking over a morning we had spent in Newgate, and of our hazardous journeys through the Dens and Kitchens of Whitechapel and Limehouse) Dore suddenly suggested a tramp to London Bridge. He had been deeply impressed with the groups of poor women and children we had seen upon the stone seats of the bridge one bright morning on our way to Shadwell. By night, it appeared to his imagination, the scene would have a mournful grandeur. We went. The wayfarers grouped and massed under the moon's light, with the ebon dome of St. Paul's topping the outline of the picture, engrossed him. In the midnight stillness there was a most impressive solemnity upon the whole, which penetrated the nature of the artist.
"And they say London is an ugly place!" was the exclamation.
"We shall see," I answered.
Victorian London - Publications - Social Investigation/Journalism - London : A pilgrimage, by Gustave Doré and Blanchard Jerrold, 1872


 

Chateau Chambord

St. Paul's

Christopher Wren

The extraordinary richness of the surface decoration found on St. Paul's is unusual in Wren's churches. He was probably influenced by the rich decoration of the Louvre. The carved panels found below the windows, such as this one, were carried out by Grinling Gibbons. There are twenty-six carvings, each different, underneath the round headed windows.


 

Chateau Chambord

St. Paul's

Christopher Wren

Even the brackets are richly decorated.

 

Chateau Chambord

St. Paul's


St. Paul's is as close to Baroque as England ever got. Manpeople think of it as simply Classical, but the undulating roofline, the extensive use of acropodiums, the overlayed pillars, and the use of rococcos in the niches are all very Baroque.

Wren was working, not with the lavish resources of the Vatican, but for a Protestant community and a conservative clergy. Resources were tight, as the whole city was being rebuilt, and Wren had no formal training as an architect.

Chateau Chambord

Christopher Wren

50 Churches

The great fire of London gave Wren an unparalleled opportunity for church building. Christopher Wren did not study architecture, but studied science. He was invited to Paris by Louis XIV, while there he was introduced to Bernini, Mansard, and Le Vau.


The Royal Commission to rebuild London, after the fire, was headed by Christopher Wren.

Chateau Chambord

Trinity College Library

Cambridge - Wren

We know more about what Wren was actually thinking when he designed this than in any other building because he documented his thoughts in a letter sent to the administrator. Here he is deliberately following the method of the ancient Romans increating a double walkway. He studied Palladio's books extensively for the detailing of the Doric order engaged columns.

Chateau Chambord

Georgian

Salisbury

This Georgian House with an ornate portal is typical of the time.


 

Chateau Chambord

AR173

Baroque Extra Reading and Films

 

Films

Persuasion - Jane Austin's Novel

Restoration - Robert Downey Junior, Meg Ryan

Railing Railing Clock Mullion Entrance Tower Buttress Balustrade Parapet Overhang Signage Cantilevered Marquee Rotunda Bay Window Window Surround Band Band Bay Window Door Surround Window Surround Bay Window 12 over 12 Sash Windows Band Signage Parapet Sill Port Hole Window Port Hole Window Banding Banding Port Hole Window banding Sash Window Parapet Railing Door Surround Roundel Vitrolite Display Window Jamb Sash Windows Banding Door Surround Band Tower Muntin Band Sill Signage Parapet Mullion Frontispiece Parapet Band Balustrade Parapet Chimney Shutter Rib Vault Arcade clerestory Apse tracery lancet arch Triforium Spire Finials Buttresses Roof Quatrefoil Architrave Cinquefoil Arch Clustered Colonette Gargoyle Spire Facade Rib Vault Finial Fenestration Mullion Muntin Tracery Quatrefoil Hoodmould or dripmould Buttress Finial Parapet Turret Rose Window Tower Parapet