This article examines the role of the double-sided tomb in fourteenth-century sculpture, with particular reference to the mausoleum of the Angevin king Robert of Anjou (1309 –1343) in the basilica of Santa Chiara in Naples. The mau- soleum contains a nun’s choir behind the sovereign’s tomb, which is in turn beyond a dividing wall, where a second side of the sepulcher most likely existed. The article argues that the choice of a double-sided tomb for the king was the result of not only the need for a visual reference for the nuns, but also of the development of an important artistic tradition of double sepulchers. The two components – divided by the wall but conceptually united – both contain ele- ments that match the original uses of the two different sacred spaces. The only sculptural element that remains in choir is a gisant, sculpted by the Bertini broth- ers like the tomb on the other side, that we can now study thanks to a photo- graphic campaign by the Bibliotheca Hertziana. The paper presents other exam- ples of double-sided tombs – from France to Tuscany and Catalonia – that confirm the importance of not only the Neopolitan tomb’s ability to bridge reli- gious spaces of different functions, and to unite them both metaphorically and literally, but also of its place in the history of fourteenth-century sculpture more broadly.

La tomba a due facce di Roberto d’Angiò e altri sepolcri opistoglittici

Jose Luis Patarroyo Vega
2022

Abstract

This article examines the role of the double-sided tomb in fourteenth-century sculpture, with particular reference to the mausoleum of the Angevin king Robert of Anjou (1309 –1343) in the basilica of Santa Chiara in Naples. The mau- soleum contains a nun’s choir behind the sovereign’s tomb, which is in turn beyond a dividing wall, where a second side of the sepulcher most likely existed. The article argues that the choice of a double-sided tomb for the king was the result of not only the need for a visual reference for the nuns, but also of the development of an important artistic tradition of double sepulchers. The two components – divided by the wall but conceptually united – both contain ele- ments that match the original uses of the two different sacred spaces. The only sculptural element that remains in choir is a gisant, sculpted by the Bertini broth- ers like the tomb on the other side, that we can now study thanks to a photo- graphic campaign by the Bibliotheca Hertziana. The paper presents other exam- ples of double-sided tombs – from France to Tuscany and Catalonia – that confirm the importance of not only the Neopolitan tomb’s ability to bridge reli- gious spaces of different functions, and to unite them both metaphorically and literally, but also of its place in the history of fourteenth-century sculpture more broadly.
Settore L-ART/01 - Storia dell'Arte Medievale
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11384/124392
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