Where: The Hampton Inn

Cost: $165.00 for 6 session(s)

Type: In Person


Instructor: Kevin Justus wears dual career hats, being a musician and an art historian.
Kevin Justus

A Sumptuous and Theatrical Feast

After nearly a century of sacks (both politically and militarily), religious division and anarchy, as well as social instability and corruption, one could argue that by 1600, Rome had shaken off its troubles and finally come into its own. New artists were on the scene like Caravaggio and Annibale Caracci, old projects were being completed, the whole city was being transformed and beautified, and a completely new attitude and approach to the arts was being developed and cultivated. The man who oversaw this transformation – the man who became (for good or ill) the artistic dictator of all of Rome, was Gian Lorenzo Bernini. More than any artist, Bernini came to dominate the Baroque Age, not only in Italy, but all of Europe. Gian Lorenzo Bernini was a sculptor, a painter and an architect, who commanded the direction of art for the majority of the 17th century. He was truly a man of his time, creating an ideal vision of the world while simultaneously reflecting how the triumphant and powerful Rome of the 17th century was really dancing on the head of a pin. By contextualizing Bernini with the other artists of his time (such as Caravaggio, Pierto da Cortona and Borromini), we will unpack and investigate works such as the Apollo and Daphne, the David and The Ecstasy of Saint Theresa, in a new light. Plus, we will examine the major projects for St. Peter’s: experience, memory, fame and immortality. Bernini’s work, perhaps like no other, shows how what appears to be even the most powerful, is truly the most fragile.

Week 1: Introduction–Rome in 1600—Energy, Power and Money. The Triumph of the Catholic Church–Caravaggio, Annibale Carracci and Maderno.

Week 2: The Young Bernini and the works for Cardinal Scipione Borghese–the rise to prominence and fame.

Week 3: The Papal artist, the Dictator of the Arts—Bernini and Urban VIII. But the higher they climb, the harder they fall.

Week 4: The Artistic and Political Response–Bernini in Disgrace–well not really. Pietro da Cortona and Borromini, two different responses to rivalry and patronage.

Week 5: The Return to Favor—Bernini and Alexander VII. Triumph and Dominance. Rome Will Never be the Same.

Week 6: Bernini’s Triumphant Trip to France….well maybe not so Triumphant….and the Twilight of Bernini’s Career. The sun never sets on the legacy of Bernini.

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Register for Bernini and Baroque Rome

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