(c. 1440—1504)

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Lombardo (c. 1435—1515)

Leon Battista Alberti (1404—1472) Italian architect, humanist, painter, and art critic



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(c. 1440–1504).

Born at Lenna, near Bergamo, he was the greatest Quattrocento architect working in Venice from c.1469. An inventive technician, he knew the works of Alberti, clearly revered Venetian Byzantine architecture, and was largely responsible for introducing a style that was a synthesis of Renaissance and earlier forms. His San Michele in Isola (1469–78), was the first Renaissance church in Venice, with a façade influenced by Alberti's San Francesco, Rimini, but with a crowning semicircular pediment with volutes and flanking segmental gables concealing the aisle roofs. He completed (1480–1500) San Zaccaria, Venice, a church built from 1458 to designs by Antonio Gambello, with a façade topped by paired columns and a huge ornate semicircular pediment again flanked by volutes. Coducci seems to have been fascinated by the Byzantine quincunx plan (found at San Marco), and employed it with variations at Santa Maria Formosa (1492–1504), and San Giovanni Crisostomo (1497–1504).

Coducci was probably responsible for the Palazzo Corner-Spinelli (c.1493) and Palazzo Véndramin-Calergi (c. 1500–9), although the latter is said to have been begun by Pietro Lombardo. Véndramin-Calergi was prototypical of the grander secular architecture of Venice, with a façade of three superimposed Orders and an array of Venetian arches. Coducci was the architect of the spectacular double staircase with smooth barrel-vaults, flights, and domed landings in the Scuola di San Giovanni Evangelista (1498–1504), the campanile of San Pietro di Castello (1482–8), the great staircase (destroyed) and completion of the façade of the Scuola Grande di San Marco (the crowning storey of semicircular gables), and (probably) of the Torre dell'Orolozio (1496–9), which closes the vista in the Piazzetta San Marco.

D. Howard (1980);Lieberman (1982);McAndrew (1980);Polli (1993);Puppi & Puppi (1977);Jane Turner (1996)

Subjects: Architecture.

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