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Tancredi Bella

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Fernand de Dartein e Gaetano Landriani nel cantiere di restauro della basilica di Sant’Ambrogio a Milano digital
formato: Articolo | ARTE LOMBARDA - 2009 - 3
Anno: 2009
In 1860 Frenand de Dartein (Strasbourg 1838 - Paris 1912) went to Italy on a mission to study northern Romanesque architecture: more specifically, he found that in the basilica of Sant’Ambrogio in Milan, undergoing a massive restoration at the time, the typical “Lombard” features appeared in their full identity. In that site, he met architect Gaetano Landriani; the collaboration between the two, furthered by a common ability in architectural drawing, addressed both the restoration and the publishing of two volumes (Dartein’s on Lombard architecture, Landriani’s on Sant’Ambrogio). This essay analyzes 17 letters – kept in private archives – from the Italian portion of the correspondence between the two colleagues (1865-92), with particular focus on the facts regarding certain parts of the basilica (which were an item of discussion at the site): the arrangement of the presbyterial area, the polychromatic stucco decoration of the apse, the stalls in the wooden choir (with a suggested date), the columns for the Pre-Romanesque basilica, the conformation of the third bay with two rectangular vaults (both demolished in ’66), the portico with its original plan and its connection to the opposite square and the bell-tower ‘of the Canons’. Upon the death of the Milanese architect (1899), Dartein had an epistolary exchange with Luca Beltrami, addressing some of his restorations and projects, and pointing out the trait d’union of their mutual friendship: Landriani himself
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