Gothic Stained-Glass at the Duomo

Gothic Stained-Glass at the Duomo
#Art

They were once considered the “Bible of the Poor”, vivaciously telling of the Sacred Scriptures to those who were not fortunate to have learned how to read. Today, the stained-glass of Milan’s Duomo - the largest in Europe - represent an original witness to a rich and complex art, without which, Gothic cathedrals would not have been the same. For the first time, in occasion of an important restoration project, one of the oldest examples present in the Cathedral reveals itself to the public in the “tenuous and golden light” behind the choir where the romantic poet Percy Bysshe Shelley would go to read Dante, inspired by the stained-glass windows looming over him. In this same intimate and spiritual atmosphere, it will also be possible to admire the episodes of the life of San Giovanni Damasceno, painted on glass by Niccolò da Varallo between 1478 and 1480 in precious multicoloured panels, before they return to their place above the altar of Santa Prassede. The intention of the Ordine degli Speziali, which gifted the stained-glass to the Duomo, was to honour the patron saint of pharmacists. Actually, San Giovanni Damasceno, a "Doctor of the Church” starting in 1890, is in part responsible for the embellished windows - the Saint was harshly opposed to the iconic tendencies of his times (VII Century) and fought to bring back sacred images that reveal the aspect and designs of God to humanity.
Francesca Grego - © 2019 ARTE.it for Bulgari Hotel Milano