Monday, March 26, 2018


1552/53 Jacopo Barozzi aka Vignola (1507/73) for Julius III Ciocchi del Monte (1550/55)
It is also known as S. ANDREA DEL VIGNOLA (St. Andrew by Vignola) the only case in Rome and perhaps in the world of a church who took the name of its architect
“He was perhaps the best known and most representative architect of the late Renaissance. Central figure in the mannerist phase architecture, Vignola was characterized by his innovative and modular way of composing the masses through the application of architectural orders. (...) Simple is the church of St. Andrew (...), the first with a pseudo-central plan due to the use of the ellipse instead of the circle” (Enciclopedia Treccani)
“There is no doubt that Vignola's artistic activity represents a strong reaction against Michelangelo's whims as a sculptor and architect, as well as his followers'. Instead of emphasizing unilaterally the sculptural effect of single elements, Vignola emphasizes again the rhythm and uniformity of the whole. The value of Vignola's work consists in refusing any personal arbitrary idea in favor of the general final result where the main feature is the proportionality of the surfaces. It is obvious that here are shown the same tendencies present in the Roman style of painting lead by the Zuccari's, which was opposing the arbitrary sculptural style of Michelangelo followed on by the Tuscan painters” (Hermann Voss)
Julius III wanted to build it as thanksgiving in memory of his escape on November 30, the day of St. Andrew, during the sack of Rome in 1527 from Palace of the Chancellery, where, still a cardinal, the Landsknechts held him captive
He offered his guards heavily drugged wine and fled with the help of Prospero Colonna
The popes never gave the church a pastoral function. It never had a convent or other ecclesiastical institution, it had no relic or miraculous icon to attract pilgrims and it was in an area that was virtually uninhabited until modern times
It was abandoned in the eighteenth century
Restored 1805 by Giuseppe Valadier (1762/1839) who appreciated the austere style of the church close to his neo-classicism. It inspired his church of S. Maria Porto della Salute in Fiumicino
It was restored again in 1826 and 1828
It is the church of the Coptic community of Rome, the Christians from Egypt
“The Coptic rite is one of the oldest of Christianity, says Father Filippo, pastor of the Coptic Catholic community in Rome. During the Mass, sung entirely in Arabic the life of Jesus is celebrated, from birth, symbolized by the bread, to the resurrection, represented by the chalice emerging from its container, progressively freed from the sheets that cover it representing the shroud of Christ. The faithful always receive communion with both bread and wine” (Sandra Fratticci -
Frescoes “Stories of St. Andrew” by Girolamo Siciolante da Sermoneta (1521/80) and Pellegrino Tibaldi (1527/96), both pupils of Perin del Vaga
“S. Andrew thanks God for the privilege of the crucifixion” by Girolamo Siciolante da Sermoneta

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