BERNINI, Gian Lorenzo
(b. 1598, Napoli, d. 1680, Roma)

Interior view

Sant'Andrea al Quirinale, Rome

Building of the Sant'Andrea al Quirinale began simultaneously with the church at Castel Gandolfo in 1658, but it took much longer to complete this richly decorated church. The particular character of the site induced Bernini to choose an oval ground plan with the transverse axis longer than the main axis between entrance and altar. This in itself was not without precedent, what is new in Sant'Andrea, however, is that pilasters instead of open chapels stand at both ends of the transverse axis.

The very clear emphasis on the vertical axis to the Via Pia is continued in the interior of the church. Opposite the doorway, Bernini sets the second, internal façade, centring on the altar and an image of martyrdom. This image is emphasized by the plasticity of representation, the use only here of the double column motif, and the oversized tympanum.

The picture shows a view towards the altar.

View the ground plan of Sant'Andrea al Quirinale, Rome.