The essay aims at analyzing the manuscript Trattato della Memoria Locale by Paolo Beni (1552-1625). This Paduan scholar of rhetoric tested the efficacy of classical mnemotechnic in the Paduan church of Santa Giustina. Here the mental diagrams of the mnemonic techniques find an architectural representation characterized by a strong consistency that allows the mnemonic to leave the abstract mental space in favour of the concrete three-dimensionality of an external space. By showing us a logical mental way to represent our memories through the introjections of an artificial external order, the treatise also implicitly suggests a reading model, a particular interpretation of a real architectural space and of the iconic-plastic elements that it contains, e.g. the precious and impressive wooden choir of the fifteenth century composed of two series of stalls with panelled and oval backs: in the upper side they show some scenes of Jesus’ life and, most important, in the lower side emblematic representations of the sacraments, the Virtues and the Vices. These symbolic images are presented in a strictly regular series already linked to a possible double edifying content to be memorized. They are characterized by high mnemonic appeal, offering themselves as real prefabricated imagines memoriae that the believer can read and use as a local system, each stall to be contemplated in its turn. The mnemonic functioning of these spaces and their relationships to the iconographic whole can affect not only the profane instrumental uses of that local structure, as Beni shows us, but also and principally the applications which are closer to that structure, namely the liturgical and catechistical. All the actions, all the movements carried out in these spaces, are therefore the metaphoric equivalent of continuous acts of memorization and remembering aimed to benefit the believer in intellectual and spiritual ways.

Testo come spazio : Paolo Beni e l’architettura memoriale di Santa Giustina a Padova

TORRE, ANDREA
2015

Abstract

The essay aims at analyzing the manuscript Trattato della Memoria Locale by Paolo Beni (1552-1625). This Paduan scholar of rhetoric tested the efficacy of classical mnemotechnic in the Paduan church of Santa Giustina. Here the mental diagrams of the mnemonic techniques find an architectural representation characterized by a strong consistency that allows the mnemonic to leave the abstract mental space in favour of the concrete three-dimensionality of an external space. By showing us a logical mental way to represent our memories through the introjections of an artificial external order, the treatise also implicitly suggests a reading model, a particular interpretation of a real architectural space and of the iconic-plastic elements that it contains, e.g. the precious and impressive wooden choir of the fifteenth century composed of two series of stalls with panelled and oval backs: in the upper side they show some scenes of Jesus’ life and, most important, in the lower side emblematic representations of the sacraments, the Virtues and the Vices. These symbolic images are presented in a strictly regular series already linked to a possible double edifying content to be memorized. They are characterized by high mnemonic appeal, offering themselves as real prefabricated imagines memoriae that the believer can read and use as a local system, each stall to be contemplated in its turn. The mnemonic functioning of these spaces and their relationships to the iconographic whole can affect not only the profane instrumental uses of that local structure, as Beni shows us, but also and principally the applications which are closer to that structure, namely the liturgical and catechistical. All the actions, all the movements carried out in these spaces, are therefore the metaphoric equivalent of continuous acts of memorization and remembering aimed to benefit the believer in intellectual and spiritual ways.
Settore L-FIL-LET/10 - Letteratura Italiana
RETORICA; MNEMOTECNICA, PAOLO BENI; ARISTOTELE; Architecture; Memory; Museums; Gallery; Exhibition design; Trattato della Memoria Locale; Paolo Beni; Padua; Church of Santa Giustina
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11384/64889
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