Accademia di architettura

Il contributo degli architetti italiani alla nuova architettura russa (XV–XVI secolo) : concezioni dell’antico, tradizione moscovita e stilemi rinascimentali

Rossi, Federica

In: Mitteilungen des Kunsthistorischen Institutes in Florenz, 2018, vol. 60, no. 1, p. [200]-219

This article offers a fresh reading of fifteenth- and sixteenth-century architecture in Russia based on methodological assumptions that scholarly debate has rarely taken into account. First of all, the Council of Ferrara and Florence (1437–1439) is considered an important starting point for the renewal of architectural discourse in Russia. Secondly, the Italian contribution to the... More

Add to personal list
    Summary
    This article offers a fresh reading of fifteenth- and sixteenth-century architecture in Russia based on methodological assumptions that scholarly debate has rarely taken into account. First of all, the Council of Ferrara and Florence (1437–1439) is considered an important starting point for the renewal of architectural discourse in Russia. Secondly, the Italian contribution to the so-called Russian Renaissance is evaluated by taking into account the different backgrounds of the individual architects due to their varying provenance (Bologna, Venice, Tuscany). The study analyses four important religious buildings in or near Moscow: the cathedrals of the Dormition (1475) and of the Archangel (1505–1508) in the Kremlin, the church of the Ascension in Kolomenskoye (1532), and the cathedral of the Intercession of the Mother of God on the Moat (or Saint Basil, 1555–1561). These churches share some common features: they were the result of the patronage of Russian rulers and were designed by Italian architects. In fact, on account of an eighteenth-century source that has been neglected so far, together with stylistic analysis, this article proposes that Saint Basil can be attributed to a group of architects that included an Italian master. Therefore, all these buildings are interesting cases in which foreign architects attempted to match local needs, each time adopting a different balance between local 'antiquity' and formal solutions drawn from their own store of knowledge.