In Slovenia, the Baroque spans two centuries, the
seventeenth and the eighteenth, while imposing itself with a delay
of a few decades upon Italy and adopting regional specificities,
between Pannonia and the Karst.
But beyond its apogee, it continues with a rococo
episode that ends around 1780, then with a post-Baroque period in
the nineteenth century. It thus concerns a phenomenon with great
extent in time.
a new design of space
According to Slovene specialists, Saint James
church in Ljubljana, the first Jesuit church, introduced into this
part of Europe a new reading of space resting on three equal naves
and relay advance towards the central altar, "the place of
purification". Inspired by the Florentine architecture of Alberti,
the Roman church of Vignoli, that dedicated to Mary in Lodi close
to Milan, the first models of the Slovene baroque are built: the
old church of Augustans in the capital, the church of the Holy
Trinity in Vrhnika, the church of the pilgrims in Nova Stifta or
that dedicated to Saint Joseph close to Preserje.
But the baroque also very quickly relates to mural
illusion thanks to the emigration of artists such as Almanach of
Antwerp or H.A. Weissenkihrer of Graz, while castles and
parks are made baroque or entirely refitted.
Parish church of St Mary.
Adergas Velesovo, Slovenia. Photo Damjan Gale
The founding of Academia operosorum in 1693 helps
the development of the plans to make the Slovene capital baroque.
The Operosi "had the initiative of a complete series of churches
and public buildings whose models also spread to provincial towns."
By order of intervention, the first authors are Italians, after
whose arrival pupils are formed locally and guests from Austria
settle. It is a Lombard Master, G. Quaglio, painter in
Gorizia and Udine, who is entrusted to complete the painting of the
cathedral in Ljubljana. "Its illusion is based on real architecture
by adding segments that represent ascension. It crosses the borders
of real space by linking the Earth to the beyond." One will not
forget therefore the remarkable seminar from the capital and its
superb baroque library.
Brezice castle, Slovenia. Photo Damjan
the case of styrie
Visual arts in Styrie, oriented towards castles
and parks, are very specific and bear the influence of Graz with a
significant intervention of stucco work, which uses tender pinks.
The most significant masterpiece is the castle of Dornava. A
connection between the architecture of Styrie and Carniole is
proposed in the cathedral of Gornji Grad. It is also in Styrie that
entirely gilded wooden altars appear.
Since 1992, the Slovene Ministry of Culture has
published a guidebook describing in detail the stages of a voyage
in the heart of the baroque, a voyage that proposes for reading the
major artistic transformations that this country knew, coming from
Italy and Austria, on the same basis as its direct neighbours from
Central and Eastern Europe.