Monday, October 22, 2012

Santa Maria della Salute

Basilica di Santa Maria della Salute (St Mary of Health), Dorsoduro
Venice, September 2012

“Generally referred to as La Salute, this crown jewel of 17th-century baroque architecture proudly reigns at a commercially and aesthetically important point, almost directly across from the Piazza San Marco, where the Grand Canal empties into the lagoon. The first stone was laid in 1631 after the Senate decided to honor the Virgin Mary of Good Health for delivering Venice from a plague. They accepted the revolutionary plans of a young, relatively unknown architect, Baldassare Longhena (who would go on to design, among other projects, the Ca’ Rezzonico). He dedicated the next 50 years of his life to overseeing its progress (he would die 1 year after its inauguration but 5 years before its completion). The only great baroque monument built in Italy outside of Rome, the octagonal Salute is recognized for its exuberant exterior of volutes, scrolls, and more than 125 statues and rather sober interior, though one highlighted by a small gallery of important works in the sacristy.”
(Frommer's Northern Italy including Venice, Milan & the Lakes, 3rd Edition)

1 comment:

cieldequimper said...

Gorgeous. I wonder if people living beside it live better.