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Giovanni Lorenzo Bernini

Giovanni Lorenzo Bernini

*  1598 Neapel
† 1680 Rom

The famous constructor, sculptor and painter Giovanni Lorenzo Bernini was born as the son of the sculptor Pietro Bernini in Naples on 7 December 1598. Even at the age of a child, Giovanni Lorenzo had his first lessons in art with his father. In 1608 he moved to Rome with his father. Because of his artistic prematurity and perfect skills Lorenzo Bernini raised particular attention. Due to Bernini's brillance in working on the stone he soon became very famous. Between 1618 and 1625 he created the famous mythologic sculpture groups of "Aeneas and Archises", "Pluto and Persephone", "Apollo and Daphne" and "David" for cardinal Scipione Borghese which still can be seen at the Villa Borghese in Rome. In 1629, after the death of C. Madero he was appointed the constructor of the St. Peter's Basilica, although he had never had an architect's training. Bernini significantly influenced the city shape of Rome with his buildings. Beside his plastic and architectic works, Bernini created more than 150 paintings. It was an honour to own one of his works and thus princes from all over Europe desired them. Even aged 66 Bernini went to Paris in 1664 to supervise the reshaping of the Louvre. The famous constructor, sculptor and painter Lorenzo Bernini died of the aftereffects of a serious disease in Rome in 1680. The artist left behind a substantial fortune of 400,000 Scudi.