Bramante ritrovato: Santa Maria di Canepanova a Pavia
In: Quaderni dell'Istituto di Storia dell'Architettura: 64, 2016
The centralised Church of Santa Maria di Canepanova in Pavia was already attributed to Bramante in the educated circles of the Barnabites, who had officiated the church since 1557, at the end of the 16th century, remaining unchallenged until Malaguzzi Valeri published a document written in the early 17th century, although referring to 1507, which linked the construction site of the church, plans for which already existed in 1492 or more definitely in 1497, to Amadeo. This solitary and belatedly remembered document was sufficient for scholars of varying calibre to attribute the initial project to Amadeo, with few exceptions. Yet a compositional and stylistic analysis of the Lombard sculptor and architect makes it easy to dismiss this supposition and safely return to attributing the architecture to Bramante. It appears that it is a few syntactical solutions, closely invoking those used in Santa Maria Presso San Satiro in Milan, to lead us back to the great architect, as well as the ability to perfectly insert the interpenetration, so to speak, of the scheme of the large Basilica of San Lorenzo in Milan with those of his satellite chapels Sant’Aquilino and Sant’Ippolito in the narrow street network of Pavia. It is in fact well-known just how important the San Lorenzo complex was to Bramante in the implementation of a few projects for St Peter’s in the Vatican. The large circular rings that characterise the side of the Church, together with the rose windows of Santa Maria delle Grazie and other Milanese examples, are also part of the important legacy that the architect from Urbino left to Lombard architectural culture between the 15th and 16th centuries, and which tends to replace the minute decorations of Lombard tradition with large geometric motifs.