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Incredible Church In Rome Boasts A Mind-Bending Optical Illusion

JANUARY 2, 2017  —  By Sarah Jewel  
Sarah Jewel

Sarah Jewel

Animal and pizza lover with an Internet addiction. Nerd to the max. Currently residing in the land of beautiful winters.

European churches and cathedrals are known for their beautiful artwork and domed ceilings.

They are spectacles of wonder and worship, often hundreds of years old and still standing today. In Rome, a city known for its historical significance, sits the Jesuit church of Saint Ignazio. Andrea Pozzo, the artist tasked with adorning the church, faced a unique challenge. He had to create an incredible domed illusion on a completely flat surface.

Construction on the church included plans to create a dome, but money ran out in 1642 and the structure was altered.

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Inside, incredible arches and vaulted ceilings show the architectural style of the time.

Pozzo painted scenes based on the triumphs of the saint for whom the church is named, Ignazio.

When the dome he planned to paint was scrapped, he used perspective to paint the appearance of a dome on the ceiling.

That's right. This ceiling is completely flat. It's not a dome at all, just a 17-meter circular painting.

Pozzo was praised for his work that allowed the church to honor Saint Ignazio as was initially intended.

Pozzo was so successful that they allowed him to paint and design the rest of the church, too. This ornate tomb is just one example of his opulent work.

(via Atlas Obscura)

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It's easy to see why Pozzo went on to write a book on artistic perspective. This church is absolutely beautiful. SHARE if you'd love to go to Rome to see this fantastic artwork in person!

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