Fonte Gaia, Siena, a joyful fountain for art

Fonte Gaia, in Siena’s Piazza del Campo, was so beautiful that local artist Jacopo della Quercia (1374-1438) became known as ‘Jacopo della Fonte’ after decorating it with reliefs between 1409 and 1419. The people of Siena always loved this fountain: it is said they nicknamed it “Gaia” (“joyful”) as soon as they tasted its water, upon inauguration in 1346.

According to art historian Luciano Bellosi, Jacopo della Quercia’s work “was a great endeavor, comparable to some of the ones carried out in the 1500s – like Michelangelo’s tomb of Pope Julius II – in terms of design and number of life size statues, although they are almost all in relief” (L. Bellosi, “Come un prato fiorito: studi sull’arte tardogotica”, Jaca Book, Milan 2000). The original sculptures by Jacopo della Quercia are now in the Museum of Santa Maria della Scala.

Art critic Cesare Brandi has highlighted the fact that creating this fountain was a “project with conflicts, interruptions, alterations, and new starts […]. The Fonte is unlike any other, and does not resemble any of the Gothic style fountains in Central Italy – Viterbo and Perugia – nor any of the ones in Siena, which are still Gothic but have an Arab influence […] It is like a great seat with a mirror of water in the center, with sacred images all around like in a church” (C. Brandi, “Tra Medioevo e Rinascimento: scritti sull’arte da Giotto a Jacopo della Quercia”, Jaca Book, Milan 2006).

While in Siena, pay a visit to this beautiful fountain: it is one of the most wonderful woks of art in the world.

Siena, Fonte Gaia, Piazza del CampoSiena, Fonte Gaia, Piazza del CampoSiena, Fonte Gaia, Piazza del CampoSiena, Fonte Gaia, Piazza del CampoSiena, Fonte Gaia, Piazza del CampoSiena, Fonte Gaia, Piazza del CampoSiena, Fonte Gaia, Piazza del CampoSiena, Fonte Gaia, Piazza del CampoSiena, Fonte Gaia, Piazza del CampoSiena, Fonte Gaia, Piazza del CampoSiena, Fonte Gaia, Piazza del Campo

Fonte Gaia, Siena, a joyful fountain for art

Siena
Piazza del Campo

WEEKLY POSTCARD

Most Read

The Great War Museum: history at high altitude

Author: Barbara PalladinoTranslation by Michelle NebioloOn the top of the Marmolada, at 3,000 meters of altitude, you’ll find the Marmolada Great War...

Palazzo Giordano Apostoli: neo-gothic inspiration

Palazzo Giordano Apostoli is located in Sassari’s central Piazza d’Italia. It was built by will of Giuseppe Giordano Apostoli in 1877, in...

Move To The Top takes you to the roof of the Dolomites

Author: Barbara PalladinoTranslation by Michelle Nebiolo On 4 July 2020, the cableway to Malga Ciapèla will re-open. Its short,...

Tenute La Montina, the realm of Franciacorta

Author: Barbara PalladinoTranslation by Michelle NebioloTenute La Montina is located in Monticelli Brusati (BS), in the north-east of Franciacorta, next to an ample...