Bright — Cathedra Petri
Ailsa’ weekly travel theme is Bright.
Cathedra Petri (Chair of St. Peter) by Gian Lorenzo Bernini in Saint Peter’s Basilica, Vatican City.
Pope Alexander VII commissioned Bernini to build a monument to give prominence to St. Peter’s wooden Chair. Bernini started in 1657 and was completed in 1666.
The Cathedra Petri was solemnly set above the altar with gilded bronze, gold, wood, and stained glass. Bernini sculpted a piece of golden cloud under the Chair as if the cloud was pushing it up, and then surrounded it with clouds and framed with angels. Above the Chair, he sculpted more clouds and angels with gold color to frame the stain glass window. And, the window of Bohemian glass was divided into twelve sections as a tribute to the Twelve Apostles.
Bernini created this masterpiece by combining the unique technique of sculpture and architecture and by manipulating the effects of sunlight. When the afternoon sunrays comes right through the stain glass, it looks as if dozens of golden angels were dancing and flying toward the golden sunrays to Heaven.
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