A strike of colour leaves you breathless as you enter the church of
(St. Benedict) on Via dei Crociferi.
The paintings that decorate the interior have a timeless beauty.
The painter Giovanni Tuccari was commissioned to fresco the church. He completed the entire painting series in just three years (1726-1729). At the centre of the vault is the triumph of St. Benedict accompanied by his sister, St. Scholastica, and Pope Gregory I. At the sides, Tuccari completed the work and painted some scenes from the saint’s life: him welcoming St. Maurus and St. Placidus, two Benedictine saints, and on another, Totila, king of the Ostrogoths, a barbarian population, kneels before him.
To complete the decoration, there is a series of female figures above the windows, the allegories of virtues : the first is prudence, a woman depicted near a marble column, a symbol of fortress; followed by temperance, faith, hope and splendid charity, a woman nursing her own baby and two others.
The depictions are full of figures, so the spectator becomes part of the scene, overwhelmed by the events. This effect and ability to involve the observer is all down to the artist. Using a play on light and shadow, Giovanni Tuccari : bestows movement and vitality upon the scenes. At the same time this painting technique allowed him to work extremely quickly; he completed the work in just three years.