SANFELICE, Ferdinando
(b. 1675, Napoli, d. 1748, Napoli)

Interior view

Palazzo dello Spagnolo, Naples

The Palace was erected during 1738, commissioned by the Marchese di Poppano, Nicola Moscati, and is attributed to the architect Ferdinando Sanfelice. Through an indistinct façade one enters to an interior octagonal courtyard leads to a double ramp stairwell. The staircases with arches in shifting planes still grants an aura of complex scenography, despite its present dilapidated state.

Sanfelice's ingenuity was focused on staircase designs, in this field he is without peer. It is impossible to give even the vaguest idea of the boldness, variety, and complexity of his designs. In the crowded conditions of Naples these staircases often seem tucked away in the most unexpected places, and this adds to their surprise effects.