PORTA, Giacomo della
(b. ca. 1533, Genova, d. 1602, Roma)


Italian architect and sculptor. He was a pupil of Michelangelo and succeeded Vignola as architect of St. Peter's. Here he removed the temporary choir built by Bramante and with the aid of Domenico Fontana finished the dome and lantern by 1590 or 1592. He completed the plan of Il Gesù, the ground-plan and other chief architectural features of which are the work of Vignola, departing somewhat from his predecessor. In Santa Maria ai Monti, he followed the ground-plan of the church of Il Gesù. He made the façade of San Luigi de' Francesi a piece of decorative work entirely independent of the body of the structure, a method much copied later. With Carlo Maderna he built the church of San Giovanni de' Fiorentini from the designs of Sansovino. The Villa Aldobrandini in Frascati with its superb gardens shows what beautiful work della Porta could construct when free to follow his own ideas.