A Matter of Perspective: Andrea Pozzo and Jesuit Art in Rome

Andrea Pozzo (1642–1709) was an architect, painter, scenographer, and Jesuit lay brother. He worked in a variety of media, including fresco, oil paint, and wooden stage sets. In the service of his major patron, the Society of Jesus, Pozzo decorated Jesuit buildings in Mondovì, Rome, Frascati, Vienna, and elsewhere. One of his greatest legacies is his two-volume treatise on perspective, Perspectiva pictorum et architectorum (Perspective in Architecture and Painting), which explains the theory of perspective and reproduces artistic programs that Pozzo designed for Jesuit churches in Rome, including frescoes, altars, and ephemeral architecture. This exhibition features architectural treatises and other publications from the 16th, 17th, and 18th centuries, and explores Pozzo’s oeuvre within the context of Roman architecture, works by other architects and mathematicians, and the Jesuits’ ambitious endeavors for teaching, preaching, and spiritual direction.