Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari - Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari information and pictures
Known as the Frari, Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari
is a famous church in Venice, with a status of a minor basilica. In 1250, the Franciscan order was granted a land plot to build a church, and construction works were completed in 1338. The Franciscans emphasized poverty and prayer, which is why the Frari is austere inside and out.
A much larger church was erected in its place, and it took about a century to build. The campanile (bell tower) is the second tallest in Venice and was completed in 1396. Today, the Frari is a parish church dedicated to Assunzione della Beata Virgine (the Assumption) and found in San Polo-Santa Croce-Dorsoduro. Santa Margherita, San Ludovico Vescovo, and San Barnaba are other churches of the parish.
The church is built in the Italian Gothic style and has a plain exterior. Figures of St Francis and the Virgin by Bartolomeo Bon adorn the west front. The tomb of Francesco Foscari was created by Paolo Bregno and Antonio and is found in the chancel. The only chancel screen in Venice can be seen here.
The Corner Chapel features an altarpiece by Bartolomeo Vivarini. The water stoups in the nave are decorated with statuettes of St Agnes and St Anthony of Padua by Girolamo Campagna. Madonna di Ca' Pesaro by Titan is in the left aisle, and Assumption of the Virgin, which was unveiled in 1518, can be seen over the main alter. The church disapproved of the painting initially because of the bright colors and innovative style, which later made it famous. The oil painting is the first commission of Titian in Venice, executed in 1516 – 1518. The painting shows three layers, depicting different events. The Apostles are in the lowest layer, shown in different poses. Virgin Mary is in the center, drawn in a blue mantle and red robe. God is above with an angel carrying a crown for Mary.
The Virgin of the Pesaro Family is in the left nave and was commissioned by one of the most powerful Venetian families. The Madonna is of more size and accompanied by saints. The inclusion of members of the Pesaro family, and the fact that the holy figures are less in number than the Pesaros hints to the power of the family. Titian (Tiziano Vecellio) himself was one of the most versatile painters of the Renaissance period, particularly in his application and use of color, and had a huge influence on other painters of this period.
Madonna and Child with Saints by Giovanni Bellini is a triptych found in the sacristy of the church. The monument has a pyramidal shape and is found in the left aisle. It was modeled by the sculptor Antonio Canova. John the Baptist by Donatello, also found here, is the artist’s first documented work in the city of Venice. There are many tombs and burial monuments of generals, composers, senators, and doges. The tombs of Beato Pacifico, founder of the church, Claudio Monteverdi, and Alvise Pasqualino, procurator of Venice can be seen in the burial grounds of the church. Doge Niccolò Tron, Bishop Jacopo Pésaro, and Francesco Barbaro, senator and humanist, are also buried here.
Where is Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari: Campo dei Frari, Santa Croce and San Polo district
Opening hours: Monday to Saturday – 10 AM to 6PM; Sunday 1PM to 6PM
How to get there: By vaporetto- San Toma stop
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