DE FABRIS, Emilio
(b. 1808, Firenze, d. 1883, Firenze)

Biography

Italian architect. He was most famous for his design of the west façade of the Santa Maria del Fiore, the Cathedral of Florence. The original façade design by Giotto was found outdated for the cathedral and so a series of three competitions were held to modify Giotto's original design, keeping with the main lines of the structure. The challenge for the competition was to create a façade which brought together two periods in architecture: the Gothic style, which had faded out, and the Renaissance style, which was more recent. In 1871, de Fabris's design won, and he immediately went to work embellishing the cathedral with red, green, and white marble.