You know, going to and back from work, either on foot or on my bycicle, there are many routes I can choose from, according to my mood….
Most of the time I choose the shortest one (usually I’m sort of late…) that makes me go past this beautiful church, St. Annunziata (St. Annunciation). This morning I decided to stop and enter the church even if there was the Mass going on (so inside I had to hide my phone taking photos…) The church and convent are of St. Francis Minors. It was dedicated to Saints Gervaso and Protaso up until the 18th century (giving the name to the road, currently known as Massimo D’Azeglio). The building was started in 1566 , founded by Duke Ottavio Farnese and by the bishop of Brugnato (favored by the one in Parma), upon the design of Giambattista Fornovo (who gives the name to the adjacent alley). In 1616 the construction was stalled however at the cornice at the first level and covered with a temporary roof. Only with the intervention of Margherita Farnese (sister Maura Lucenia) and public offers, the temple was completed as foreseen in the original design, with roofing by Girolamo Rainaldi deviating from the project of Fornovo (who had planned a dome with illuminating windows). The resulting plan is quite atypical and an obvious source of curiosity for many artists: Filippo Juvarra , creator of the Superga Basilica and the Stupinigi Palace, made precise sketches of its structure. It has an almost elliptical plan (about 31 m. X 20), with two semi-circles joined by two straight lines, which joins the apse and ten chapels decorated with plasters, as well as an interior atrium; the space is divided by fluted pillars. The exterior perspective, bare yet strengthened by the robust dorsal forms of the chapels and buttresses, express an image of elasticity and strength contemporarily.