Luogo - Religious building

Battistero di Parma

Where Vicolo al Battistero, Parma

Situated next to Duomo, it is considered the point of junction between Romanesque and Gothic architecture. It was commissioned to Benedetto Antelami in 1196, according to an inscription on the portal, and concluded in 1270. The exterior, in pink Verona marble, it is octagonal: octagon is symbol of eternity. Unprecedented is its development in height, similar to a truncated tower. The outer surface is decorated with a complex pattern of solids and voids that punctuate chiaroscuro effects. On the lower level of the marble facing, we find Zooforo, a series of seventy-sculpted tiles in relief by Antelami and his workshop and set like a continuous frieze. The interior is made up of 16 arches that make up as many niches, each containing a painted scene dating back to XIII-XIV century. The "umbrella" dome is divided by means of Verona pink marble ribs, each of which rests on a column. The set of internal and external sculptures is the most important Italian sculptural operations of the transition period from Romanesque to Gothic. Inside are placed the sculptures belonging to so-called "cycle of months and seasons".

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