Giacomo Quarenghi architetto nella San Pietroburgo imperiale
Piervaleriano Angelini e M. Cristina Rodeschini
Accademia Carrara, Sala Vitali
Over little less than forty years of work in Russia, Quarenghi contributed significantly to shaping the plans of Empress Catherine II of Russia and, later, of her son Alexander, who set out to transform St. Petersburg into a European capital.
The exhibit, consisting of a selection of about seventy of the architect’s pages drawn from the Carrara collection, is the ideal conclusion of the celebrations that began in 2015 under the aegis of the Municipality of Bergamo and the Quarenghi Observatory, culminating in the 2017 anniversary, the bicentenary of the architect’s death. Giacomo Quarenghi is Bergamo’s major international figure, and his notoriety is confirmed by the pres-ence of his works in important international institutions – the St. Petersburg Hermitage, Moscow’s Puškin, Warsaw’s National Museum, the Stockhom Museum, the Galleries of the Venice Academy and the Civic Collections of the Sforzesco Castle in Milan – to name just a few. Carrara’s Quarenghi collection, with its large number of drawings (more than 750) preserved by the Angelo Mai Civic Library of Bergamo, is one of the most abundant, though still little known and till now studied only haphazardly. These works are technical elaborations that represent the typological range of Quarenghi’s designs, a combination of his skill and refinement in defining precious interiors of impeccable taste and decorative perfection, capable of highlighting Quarenghi’s astonishing talent and solid artistic training. The exhibit thus illustrates in dynamic succession an abundant sampling of the architect’s working method and his excellent drafting skills.