Bernini and Borromini

As a brief introduction, Bernini and Borromini were two architects leaded the seventeen century’s Baroque architecture in Italy. Well, also it’s hard to define them as only an architect, sculptor, just genius master artists. They are also well known for the rival of the century. They lived in the exactly same century, their age is not even one year difference. However except that they were same age, there was no similarity between them. They had very different background, personality.

Bernini was praised from his youth as a prodigy, his client were the best supporters were very important people in Rome, including pope and the cardinals. Compared to this, Borromini was the son of a stonemason and began his career as a stonemason. Fate led him to meet Bernini in the St. Peter’s Basilica construction. Borromini showed Bernini some of his sketches, and Bernini gave him a promise that he’ll give him a job as an architect, I guess he was so impressed by same age young new architect. What they’d experienced influences their personality and it all showed up in their works. 10994339_743836395731794_6366486692343007410_n 10407231_743836482398452_5148328232771481138_n

These pictures are Boromoni’s San Carlo alle Quattro Fontane. Every spaces are very geometric. Even though so much use of curves, even curve itself too, all from very simple geometry. The complicated patterns are very proportional, and the natural light is amazingly embraced into the interior space.


This is the interior of Bernini’s Sant’Andrea al Quirinale. As you can see, the sculpture is breathtaking. Not only from the very detailed physical structure itself, I was very surprised about the material, and try to touch every part that I can reach as much as possible. If I need to compared these two churches, San Andrea is set back from the street. Curved stairs lead people to the entrance, and two iconic columns were stood up at the entrance.

When Ozayr asked the question at the end of the two churches tour about which one do you prefer to everyone in the group, I was hiding some of my friends’ back and wait till the last minute, debating myself, thinking about the reasons, and I really wished he forgot about me and it worked! I escaped from one of the hardest question in the world. At this point, I’m more like yo be on the side of the ‘weak.’ Still many people confuse about Bernini and Bormini’s name, honestly I was the one who always confuse their name even until a few years ago.  But the fun thing is, at this point, I can tell their characteristic from their name. It could sound like restrained interpretation, but Bernini sounds more like bourgeois, and Borromini more sounds like blue, some dark feeling from somewhere I don’t know. Maybe it is because now I understand their characteristic and actually saw their work and felt it from their evidence. I remember one of our Rome professor Paulo said he considers  Bernini as an  amazing sculptor, and Boromini as an amazing architecture. And after these two churches experience, it’s hard to say but I agree with that.


There are so many famous story about Bernini and Borromini in Piazza Navona, actually all around Rome. Some called they are great competitors each other back in that time, and it was a intense competition, and also called as ‘revenging’ each other. However, whatever the true reason is, I concluded that because of they existed in the same period, it made possible to create all those intensive, enormous, all those great adjective architecture in Roman period. Until now all those people over the world can learn, enjoy them, plus have something to joke about it. I’m very appreciated about it and I’m sure all we do in school together is a part of same thing, learning from each other. There’s so many things to say about these two amazing people! Now I dont know how to call them as I already said differently as sculptor and architect and I feel bad myself to call those two great great people as something. At this last minute, I asked around some people next to me try to  finalize this complicated issue, but the fun thing is one of them said (Skyler) He likes Bernini better, since he does way more geometric works. One of them (Megan) said she likes Borromini better cause he did more mathematical, geometrical works. So….. Who knows? What’s your opinion?


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