Sant'Ignazio Church, Rome  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

The Church of Saint Ignatius of Loyola at Campus Martius (Template:Lang-it, Template:Lang-la) is Roman Catholic titular church dedicated to Ignatius of Loyola, the founder of the Jesuit order, located in Rome, Italy. Built in Baroque style between 1626 and 1650, the church functioned originally as Rectory church to the adjacent Collegio Romano, that moved in 1584 to a new larger building and became the Pontifical Gregorian University. The Cardinal Priest of the Titulus S. Ignatii de Loyola in Campo Martio is Cardinal Roberto Tucci, S.J.


The church has a Latin cross plan with numerous side chapels. The building was inspired by the Jesuit mother church, the Church of the Gesù in Rome (finished in the late 16th century). The imposing order of Corinthian pilasters that rings the entire interior, the theatrical focus on the high altar at the rear of the broad eastern apse, the church's colored marbles, animated stucco figural relief, richly ornamented altars, extensive gilding, and bold Tromp l’oeil paintings in the "dome" at its crossing and in the nave ceiling all produce a festive, sumptuous effect. The church stages the triumph of its dedicatee most effectively.

The nave's west wall has a sculptural group showing Magnificence and Religion (1650) by Alessandro Algardi. Algardi also helped design the high reliefs in stucco that run on both lateral nave walls just above the entries to the chapels and beneath the nave's grandiose entablature.

Other artworks in the church include a huge statue of St. Ignatius, in stucco, by Camillo Rusconi (1728) and the glass coffin of, and portrait of Cardinal Bellarmino within. (Bellarmino died in 1621). e apse.]]

Frescoes of Andrea Pozzo

Andrea Pozzo, a Jesuit brother, painted the grandiose fresco that stretches across the nave ceiling (after 1685). It celebrates the work of Saint Ignatius and the Society of Jesus in the world presenting the saint welcomed into paradise by Christ and the Virgin Mary and surrounded by allegorical representations of all four continents. Pozzo worked to open up, even dissolve the actual surface of the nave's barrel vault illusionistically, arranging a perspectival projection to make an observer see a huge and lofty cupola (of a sort), open to the bright sky, and filled with upward floating figures. A marble disk set into the middle of the nave floor marks the ideal spot from which observers might fully experience the illusion. A second marker in the nave floor further east provides the ideal vantage point for the trompe l'oeil painting on canvas that covers the crossing and depicts a tall, ribbed and coffered dome. The cupola one expects to see here was never built and in its place,in 1685, Andrea Pozzo supplied a painting on canvas with a perspectival projection of a cupola. Destroyed in 1891, the painting was subsequently replaced. Pozzo also frescoed the pendentives in the crossing decorating each with an Old Testament figure—Judith, David, Samson, and Jaele.

Again by Pozzo, the frescoes in the eastern apse present the life and apotheosis of St. Ignatius. The Siege of Pamplona in the tall panel on the left commemorates the wounding of St. Ignatius, which led to the convalescence that transformed his life. The panel over the high altar with The Vision of St. Ignatius at the Chapel of La Storta commemorates the place where the saint received his divine calling. St. Ignatius sends St. Francis Xavier to India recalls the aggressive Jesuit missionary work in foreign countries, and finally, St. Ignatius Receiving Francesco Borgia recalls the recruitment of the Spanish noble who would become General of the Company of Jesuits. Pozzo is also responsible for the fresco in the conch depicting St. Ignatius Healing the Pestilent.

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Sant'Ignazio Church, Rome" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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