San Giuseppe dei Teatini Church

Palermo, Italy

San Giuseppe dei Teatini is considered one of the most outstanding examples of the Sicilian Baroque in Palermo.

The church was built at the beginning of the 17th century by Giacomo Besio, a Genoese member of the Theatines order. It has a majestic though simple façade. In the centre niche is housed a statue of San Gaetano, founder of the Theatines order. Another striking feature is the large dome with a blue and yellow majolica covering. The tambour decorated with double columns, and was designed by Giuseppe Mariani. The belfry tower was designed by Paolo Amato.

The interior has a Latin cross plan with a nave and two aisles, divided by marble columns of variable height. The inner decoration is an overwhelming parade of Baroque art, with stuccoes by Paolo Corso and Giuseppe Serpotta. Great frescoes can be seen in the nave, in the vault of the transept: these were painted by Filippo Tancredi, Guglielmo Borremans and Giuseppe Velasquez. The frescoes were severely damaged during World War II, but have been accurately restored. The most important piece of art is however a wood crucifix by Fra' Umile of Petralia.

The crypt houses remains of a former church, dedicated to Madonna of Providence.

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Founded: 1612-1677
Category: Religious sites in Italy

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