Palmieri Bocchi Monument, 1816

Third Cloister, east portico

Designed by the architect Vincenzo Vannini (1791-1873) with sculptures and ornaments by Luigi Roncagli (1767-1839), the monument of Paolo Palmieri Bocchi (d. 1815) is surely the neoclassical monument that most reflects ancient tastes in Certosa.

The admirable draping seems turned upward to reveal the work hidden below. The bas-relief depicts allegorical figures dressed in ancient robes and positioned according to a precise pattern. First on the left is Music/Harmony, recognisable by the attributes in hand like a harp and a scroll. This figure is in conversation with Architecture/Wisdom, holding the mason's level.
Alongside the two is Sculpture, arm in arm with Architecture, placing its compass and mallet next to the mason's level. The left hand indicates the Academia figure in a pose of mourning.
At the foot of this latter figure is a palette with brushes while its elbow rests on the base of a statue of Minerva/Wisdom, accompanied by a pretty owl. Besides depicting the mourning of the arts, the whole scene demonstrates Bocchi's membership in freemasonry.

In the upper part rises a stele on which are placed two ram heads that support an oak garland with their horns. Above it is situated an epigraph in Latin. The monument was so well received that Vannini used the same composition with variations for the Giorgio Orsi family in the Loggia of the Tombs.

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